Date of Award
Critically Appraised Topic
Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD)
Gail Bass/Devon Olson Lambert
In a foundational statement outlining the profession’s belief regarding the needs of the pediatric population with visual impairments, the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) stated children with visual impairments “benefit significantly from coordinated and comprehensive services to enable them to learn to use their remaining vision more efficiently and use nonvisual methods to complete activities” (Warren & Nobles, 2011, p. 2). According to Warren and Nobles (2011), individuals can have two types of visual impairments: cortical visual impairment and ocular visual impairment. Cortical visual impairment (CVI) deals with affected areas of the brain that limits visual processing, whereas ocular visual impairment is specific to deficits affecting the eyes. CVIs are the leading cause of visual impairments. Since children with CVI have difficulties with visual processing, this can lead to a negative impact on their participation in education. Visual impairment can lead to a delay in the child’s learning and impact their developmental milestones. CVIs can also impair one’s ability to participate in other occupations such as playing, self-feeding, dressing, and navigating the environment (Harpster et al., 2022). According to Synder et al. (2019), 27,000 students with visual impairments receive services in U.S. school systems yearly. The current culture and environment of school settings present significant challenges for students with visual impairments; however, collaborative team efforts and skilled occupational services in the school system can maximize their success (Doxsey & Jones, 2021).
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Gentry, Nicole; Gross, Skye; Hammon, Alyssa; and Mossman-Larson, Angela, "Examining Occupational Therapists’ Role in Providing Client-Centered Care for School-Aged Children in the Educational Setting with Visual Impairment" (2023). Critically Appraised Topics. 58.