Assessment Resources

This section provides resources about different assessment tools and when they might be most helpful. This can be complex because there is no single assessment tool for students with visual impairments. Instead, there are various tools specific to different needs - some for skills, some for cognitive assessment, some for other needs.

It is crucial to remember that the vast majority of assessment tools are designed for students who are sighted, and assessment tools should not penalize students with visual impairments for not being able to perform tasks that require vision.

Most teachers use a combination of formal and informal assessment tools. Some are designed specifically for students with visual impairments, while others are adapted or modified.

Functional Vision Screening Tool and Functional Hearing Screening Tool in English and Spanish

Source: Illinois School for the Deaf

Written by an Occupational Therapist (OT), this 80-page document includes an overview of CVI, and information on the evaluation and education of children with CVI.

Some of the visual skills that need to be evaluated as part of a child's comprehensive vision examination.

Source: Optometrists Network

This free online resource provides information about accessibility, education policy, and more.

Source: American Printing House for the Blind (APH)

Identifies various types of transition assessment, guidelines for conducting an assessment, and criteria for selection of assessment tools.

Source: National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center (NSTTAC)

The NCEO website provides information about alternate assessment, including state policies, publications and other resources, and a section on alternate assessments for students with significant cognitive disabilities.

Source: National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO)

Assessing vision as part of an early intervention program for infants and children who have additional or multiple disabilities and visual impairment (MDVI).

Source: Scottish Sensory Centre

Doris Willoughby offers specific ideas for the assessment of children with a visual impairment, including adaptations of existing instruments, as well as observation of the child in activities of daily living.

Source: National Federation of the Blind (NFB)

Find out the purpose of assessments and learn more about some of the different types.

Source: FamilyConnect

A 73-page handbook on the assessment of functional vision; includes advice on low vision training. Link also includes access to book 1, covering screening for impaired vision. 

Source: World Health Organization (WHO)

In this 60-minute presentation Frances Mary D'Andrea addresses the importance of monitoring students’ progressive skills as they develop as readers and writers.

Source: Perkins eLearning Tutorial and Webinar

This one-hour webinar explores the role of the teacher of students with visual impairments (TVI) in reading and writing instruction, both as a collaborator with the general classroom teacher and as a provider of specific instruction. The importance of monitoring students’ progressive skills are emphasized, with specific approaches and tools for monitoring progress of students using braille. Also available as a self-paced tutorial.

Source: Perkins eLearning

This page presents a brief overview of vision-related and developmental assessments.

Source: FamilyConnect

Looking for a template for assessing students with visual impairments? TSBVI provides an example for download, which can be modified as needed. Includes assessment of accessing and producing written communication, physical requirements for computer use, and recommendations.  Other templates are available in PDF and RTF form for the major types and brands of assistive technology for users who are blind or visually impaired.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

A self-paced online course for teams assessing the assistive technology needs of students with visual impairment. Includes videos to demonstrate assessment techniques and student interaction with the potential equipment..

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

In this 11-page document, Sam Morgan describes biobehavioral states and explains why they are important when working with students with profound disabilities.

Source: Hunter College

This article introduces two ways to classify states of awareness in "individuals with profound disabilities."  (This is a scanned document and is not accessible to screen readers.)

This site contains information on child development, including developmental screening and positive parenting tips.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

"Collaborative Assessment is designed to help school psychologists, … teachers, and allied professionals to understand the impact of visual impairment on the assessment process…." Written by the assessment team at the California School for the Blind, this PowerPoint is accompanied by a transcript of the training session.

Source: Pennsylvania Training & Technical Assistance Network (PaTTAN)

Author Jill Green, is a Senior Director of Services for Students with Disabilities at the College Board. Here she explains how students with visual impairments can get the testing accommodations they need.

Source: Future Reflections, Winter 2014

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