Visual Impairment

Professionals conducting assessment and rendering diagnoses of these disabilities must be qualified to do so and have experience in assessing the needs of adult learners.  The qualified professional in this field is licensed to practice as an optometrist and is a Fellow of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development.  Document for students with visual impairments must include the following:

  • A statement of vision-related disability with supporting numerical description that reflects the current impact the blindness or vision loss has on the student's functioning (the age of acceptable documentation is dependent on the disabling condition, the current status of the student and the student's request for accommodations).
  • Summary of assessment procedures and evaluation instruments used to make the diagnosis and a summary of evaluation results, including standardized scores.
  • Present symptoms that meet the criteria for diagnosis.
  • Medical information relating to the student’s needs and the status of the individual’s vision (static or changing) and its impact on the demands of the academic program.
  • Narrative or descriptive text providing both quantitative and qualitative information about the student’s abilities which might be helpful in understanding the student’s profile, including the use of corrective lenses and ongoing visual therapy (if appropriate).
  • A statement of the functional impact or limitations of the disability on learning or other major life activity and the degree to which it impacts the individual in the learning context for which accommodations, adjustments, or modifications are being requested.
  • Suggestions as to how the functionally limiting evidence of the disabling condition(s) may be accommodated.
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