PRACTCIUM IN VISUAL IMPAIRMENTS
I. COURSE DESCRIPTION
This course is structured to provide the graduate student with learning experiences with
students who are sensory impaired and includes curriculum development, programming,
counseling, assessment, and teaching in structured situations. Your faculty advisor will
visit with you at least five times during your clinical and practica hours.
II. COURSE OUTLINE
This course will provide students with knowledge of:
A. Program development and organization of all required materials.
B. Curricular planning, resources and materials development, program planning,
consultation, diagnostic-prescriptive programming, behavior management,
institutional and agency activities, child study, career/vocational needs, task
analysis, and development of individualized educational programs (IEPs) for
students with sensory impaired students, ages 0 to 21 years. Methods of adapting
the regular instructional programs for students with visual impairment and
instructional approaches unique to their education. AL Code .41-1-a-4
C. Information on the function of multicultural factors in the full range of service to
exceptional individuals will be presented.
D. Counseling techniques with parents and students.
E. Models of teaching.
III. GOALS Students will demonstrate ability to:
A. Developing and instituting a project for a specific student or class which reflects
the following on content:
1. Assessment of student skills.
2. Individualized instruction procedures. Continuously analyze th
eeffectiveness of the individualized education plan and make appropriate
modifications. AL Code 34-1-b-4
3. The influence of multicultural factors on service to the exceptional learner.
4. Curricular materials incorporating the cognitive, affective, and psychomotor
5. Design of materials modifications. . Adapt the regular curriculum to the
specific needs of each student with visual impairment. AL Code 41-1-b-5
Individualized Educational Programs (IEP)
6. Counseling with parents, students, and other professionals. Work effectively
with members of the instructional team and professionals from related
fields. AL Code .34-1-b-10
7. Effectively communicate the goals of the instructional program to the
student, the student’s primary care-givers, and appropriate professionals. AL
8. Utilize effective teaching strategies designed to promote learning and
improve student achievement. AL Code 34-1-b-7
Goals - continuation
9. Provide instruction in reading in the medium that is appropriate for
the individual abilities of the student with a visual impairment, including Braille,
large print, and low vision devices. AL Code .41-1-b-2
B. Presenting the practical experience goals, objectives and results.
IV. LABORATORY EXPERIENCE
A. Laboratory experiences in sensory impairments are included in each core course.
The laboratory observations and participation relevant to each course are
considered as preparation for classroom instruction for students of all ages and in
varied educational placements.
B. Laboratory experiences are preparatory to the practicum and are the basis for the
selection of individual practicum sites. These site experiences include:
1. Public school sites in the State of Alabama.
2. Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind campuses at the Helen Keller School,
Alabama School for the Blind, or Regional Center programs.
3. Other state residential schools for the sensory impaired as approved by the
instructor, including summer camps.
4. The UAB Horizons Program, UAB Sparks Center, or other UAB educational
settings as approved by the instructor.
V. REQUIRED REPORTS:
A portfolio of each course and laboratory experiences will be required as documentation
of experiences prior to the practicum. The student will provide a written documentation
of the practicum experience and will report to the class about the experience.
VI. REQUIRED PRIOR TO COMPLETION TO PROGRAM:
Comprehensive examinations are required for each student prior to recommendation for
certification or masters degree.
Council for Exceptional Children – Knowledge and Skills
Students will demonstrate knowledge of the CEC Common Core Knowledge and Skills through
class presentations, portfolio development, and student/teacher classroom participation.
The knowledge and skill areas for this course are as follows:
CC3, S2: Create and maintain records
CC4, S9: Sequence, implement, and evaluate individual learning objectives
CC4, S10: Integrate affective, social, and career/vocational skills with academic curricula.
CC4, S11: Use strategies for facilitating maintenance and generalization of skills across
CC4, S12: Use instructional time properly.
CC4, S15: Establish and maintain rapport with learners
CC5, K1: Basic classroom management theories, methods, and techniques for individuals
with exceptional learning needs
CC5, S1: Create a safe, positive, and supportive learning environment in which diversities
CC5, S2: Use strategies and techniques for facilitating the functional integration of
individuals with exceptional learning needs in various settings
CC5, S4: Incorporate evaluation, planning, and management procedures that match learner
needs with the instructional environment.
CC5, S5: Design a learning environment that encourages active participation by learners in
a variety of individual and group learning activities
CC5, S6: Design, structure, and manage daily routines, effectively including transition time,
for students, other staff, and the instructional setting.
CC5, S7: Direct the activities of a classroom paraprofessional, aide, volunteer, or peer tutor.
CC5, S8: Create an environment that encourages self-advocacy and increased
CC6, S1: Demonstrate a variety of effective behavior management techniques appropriate
to the needs of individuals with exceptional learning needs
CC6, S2: Implement the least intensive intervention consistent with the needs of the
individuals with exceptionalities.
CC6, S3: Modify the learning environment (schedule and physical arrangement) to manage
CC6, S4: Identify realistic expectations for personal and social behavior in various settings.
CC7, K5: Ethical practices for confidential communication to others about individuals with
exceptional learning needs.
CC7, S2: Communicate and consult with individuals, parents, teacher, and other school and
CC7, S3: Foster respectful and beneficial relationships between families and professionals.
CC7, S4: Encourage and assist families to become active participants in the educational
CC7, S5: Plan and conduct collaborative conferences with families or primary caregivers.
CC7, S6: Collaborate with regular classroom teachers and other school and community
Personnel in integrating individuals with exceptional learning needs into various learning
CC7, S7: Communicate with regular teachers, administrators, and other school personnel
about characteristics and needs of individuals with specific exceptional learning
CC7, S2: Demonstrate positive regard for the culture, religion, gender, and sexual
orientation of individual students.
CC7, S3: Promote and maintain a high level of competence and integrity in the practice of
CC7, S4: Exercise objective professional judgment in the practice of the profession.
CC7, S5: Demonstrate proficiency in oral and written communication.
CC7, S7: Comply with local, state, provincial, and federal monitoring and evaluation
Students will demonstrate knowledge of the CEC Visual Impairments Knowledge and Skills
through class presentations, portfolio development, and student/teacher classroom participation.
The knowledge and skill areas for this course are as follows:
VV1, K3: Current educational definitions of students with visual disabilities, including
identification, criteria, labeling issues, and current incidence and prevalence
VV2, K3: Basic terminology related to diseases and disorders of the human visual system.
VV2, K5: The effects of a visual impairment on early development (motor system,
cognition, social/emotional interactions, self-help, language).
VV2, K7: The effects of a visual impairment on language and communication.
VV2, K8: The effects of a visual impairment on the individual's family and the reciprocal
Impact on the individual's self-esteem.
VV2, K11: The impact of additional exceptionalities on students with visual impairments.
Assessment, Diagnosis, and Evaluation
VV3, K1: The impact of visual disorders on learning and experience.
VV3, K2: Specialized terminology used in assessing individuals with visual impairments,
both as it relates to the visual system and in areas of importance.
VV3, K3: Ethical considerations and legal provisions, regulations, and guidelines (federal,
state/provincial, and local) related to assessment of students with visual
impairments (including the legal versus functional definitions of blindness and
VV3, K4: Specialized policies regarding referral and placement procedures for students with
VV3, K5: Procedures used for screening, prereferral, referral, and classifications of students
with visual impairments, including vision screening methods, functional vision
evaluation, and learning media assessment.
VV3, K6: Alternative assessment techniques for students who are blind or who have low
VV3, K7: Appropriate interpretation and application of scores obtained as a result of
assessing individuals with visual impairments.
VV3, K8: Relationships among assessment, IEP development, and placement as they
Affect vision-related services.
VV3, S1: Interpret eye reports and other vision-related diagnostic information.
VV3, S2: Use disability-specific assessment instruments appropriately (e.g., Blind Learning
Aptitude, Tactile Test of Basic Concepts, Diagnostic Assessment Procedure).
VV3, S3: Adapt and use a variety of assessment procedures appropriately when evaluating
individuals with visual impairments.
VV3, S4: Create and maintain disability-related records for students with visual
VV3, S5: Gather background information about academic, medical, and family history as it
relates to the student's visual status for students with visual impairments.
VV3, S6: Develop individualized instructional strategies to enhance instruction for learners
with visual impairments, including modifications of the environment, adaptations
of materials, and disability-specific methodologies.
Instructional Content and Practice
VV4, K1: Methods for the development of special auditory, tactual, and modified visual
Communication skills for students with visual impairments, including:
(a) Braille reading and writing.
(b) Handwriting for students with low vision and signature writing for students who
(c) Listening skills and compensatory auditory skills.
(d) Typing and keyboarding skills.
(e) The use of unique technology for individuals with visual impairments.
(f) The use of alternatives to nonverbal communication.
VV4, K2: Methods to acquire disability-unique academic skills, including: (a) The use of an
abacus. (b)The use of a talking calculator.(c)Tactile graphics (including maps,
charts, tables, etc.). (d) Adapted science equipment.
VV4, K3: Methods for the development of basic concepts needed by young students who do
not learn visually.
VV4, K4: Methods for the development of visual efficiency, including instruction in the use
of print adaptations, optical devices, and nonoptical devices.
VV4, K5: Methods to develop alternative reasoning and decision-making skills in students
with visual impairments.
VV4, K6: Methods to develop alternative organization and study skills for students with
VV4, K7: Methods to prepare students with visual impairments for structured precane
orientation and mobility assessment and instruction.
VV4, K8: Methods to develop tactual perceptual skills for students who are or will be
primarily tactile learners.
VV4, K9: Methods to teach human sexuality to students who have visual impairments, using
tactual methods that are anatomically accurate.
VV4, K10: Methods to develop adapted physical and recreation skills for individuals
who have visual impairments.
VV4, K11: Methods to develop social and daily living skills that are normally learned or
reinforced by visual means.
VV4, K12: Strategies for developing career awareness and providing vocational counseling
for students with visual impairments.
VV4, K13: Strategies for promoting self-advocacy in individuals with visual impairments.
VV4, K14: Functional life skills instruction relevant to independent, community, and
personal living and employment for individuals with visual impairments
(a) Methods for accessing printed public information.
(b) Methods for accessing public transportation.
(c) Methods for accessing community resources.
(d) Methods for acquiring practical skills (e.g., keeping personal records, time
management, personal banking, emergency procedures).
VV4, K15: Sources of specialized materials for students with visual impairments.
VV4, K16: Techniques for modifying instructional methods and materials for students with
visual impairments, and assisting classroom teachers in implementing these
VV4, S1: Interpret and use unique assessment data for instructional planning with students
with visual impairments.
VV4, S2: Choose and use appropriate technologies to accomplish instructional objectives
for students with visual impairments, and integrate the technologies appropriately
into the instructional process.
VV4, S3: Sequence, implement, and evaluate individual disability-related learning
objectives for students with visual impairments.
VV4, S4: Use strategies for facilitating the maintenance and generalization of disability-
related skills across learning environments for students with visual impairments.
VV5, K1: A variety of input and output enhancements to computer technology that address
the specific access needs of students with visual impairments in a variety of
VV5, K2: Model programs, including career-vocational and transition, that have been
effective for students with visual impairments.
VV5, S1: Prepare modified special materials (e.g., in Braille, enlarged, outlined,
highlighted) for students who have visual impairments.
VV5, S2: Obtain and organize special materials to implement instructional goals for
learners with visual impairments.
VV5, S3: Design learning environments that are multisensory and that encourage active
Participation by learners with visual impairments in a variety of group and
individual learning activities.
VV5, S4: Create a learning environment that encourages self-advocacy and independence
for students with visual impairments.
VV5, S5: Transcribe, proofread, and interline grade II Braille and Nemeth code Braille
VV5, S6: Use Braillewriter, slate and stylus, and computer technology to produce Braille
Managing Student Behavior and Social Interaction Skills
VV6, K1: Teacher attitudes and behaviors that affect the behaviors of students with visual
VV6, S1: Prepare students with progressive eye conditions to achieve a positive transition
to alternative skills.
VV6, S2: Prepare students who have visual impairments to access information and services
from the community at large.
VV6, S3: Prepare students who have visual impairments to respond to societal attitudes and
actions with positive behavior, self-advocacy and a sense of humor.
Communication and Collaborative Partnerships
VV7, K1: Strategies for assisting parents and other professionals in planning appropriate
Transitions for students who have visual impairments.
VV7, K2: Sources of unique services, networks, and organizations for students with visual
VV7, K3: Roles of paraprofessionals who work directly with students who have visual
impairments (e.g. sighted readers, transcribers, aides) or who provide special
materials to them.
VV7, K4: Need for role models who have visual impairments, and who are successful.
VV7, S1: Help parents and other professionals to understand the impact of a visual
impairment on learning and experience.
Revised March 1999