Visual Impairment and Blindness Resources

These resources cover the basics of visual impairment and blindness, covering the causes, as well as definitions of professional and medical terminology, descriptions of vision examination procedures, simulations, statistics, and recommendations for protecting the eyes and vision. This section also includes information on support groups for parents, families, and consumers, along with advice for environmental adaptations and tips for living with blindness and visual impairment.

For educational resources, please visit the sections grouped under Teaching Resources.

This colorful diagram of the eye helps explain vision changes, vision loss, and eye disorders and diseases.

Source: VisionAware

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding specific visual conditions are composed and periodically reviewed by pediatric ophthalmologists and certified orthoptists from the Public Information Committee of AAPOS. For questions or suggestions regarding FAQs please contact us. Some terms are available in English, Chinese, and Spanish.

Source: American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (AAPOS)

Causes, risk factors, symptoms, treatment, and current research on cataracts.

Source: National Eye Institute

These suggestions are designed to help make mealtime a more pleasant experience.

Source: Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB)

Implementing the key informant method for identifying children with blindness or visual impairment; includes suggestions for training and communication materials. Available as a PDF as well.  (2007)

Source: Community Eye Health Journal

Child-driven assessment techniques for working with children who are congenitally deafblind. The author discusses the importance of knowing about the development of vision and hearing skills and possible implications of clinical findings.

Source: California Deaf-Blind Services

Information on causes of and treatments for retinitis pigmentosa (RP), macular degeneration, usher syndrome, and the entire spectrum of retinal degenerative diseases.

e-Learning through webinars, downloadable documentation, and online training on JAWS screen reading software, MAGic screen magnification software, PAC Mate Omni accessible Pocket PC, and more.

Source: Freedom Scientific

Chapter from an online book; includes definitions, factors that affect functional vision, a list of eight areas for assessment, and much more.

Source: Low Vision Online

Lists the seven functions that comprise the spectrum of visual functioning.

Source: Scottish Sensory Centre

An explanation of the functional field of vision test, with definitions of terms.

Source: Lea-Test

Darick Wright explains the essential components of a functional vision assessment and illustrates them with specific examples. The workshop materials are listed along with other assessment tools and include PDFs of a slideshow, handouts, and evaluation tools.

Source: Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired (British Columbia)

Darick Wright, Coordinator of New England Eye Clinic, offers a multimedia overview of the essential components of a functional vision assessment. Includes printable assessment worksheets.

Source: SET-BC (Special Education Technology-British Columbia)

A quick outline of the components of an assessment and their importance. Also available in Spanish.

Source: FamilyConnectfamilyconnec

A fact sheet on functional assessment for children with deafblindness by Dr. Irene L. Troper.

Source: Colorado Department of Education; Colorado Services to Children with Deafblindness

Darick Wright explains the essential components of a functional vision assessment and illustrates them with specific examples. For handouts, visit

Source: Provincial Resource Centre for the Visually Impaired

A functional vision assessment helps parents understand their child's visual abilities and how to make the most of them in various settings.

Source: Vision Australia

A bibliography of materials on functional vision; some include online text.

Source: National Center on Deaf-Blindness (NCDB)

A teacher's list of materials to assemble to create assessment kits; one for readers and one for students who don't yet read.

Source: Teaching Students with Visual Impairments

Gardening can be a wonderful sensory experience. A number of simple tips can reduce the workload and increase your sensory pleasure. 

Source: Vision Aware