Low Vision Devices For Students With Visual Impairments

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low vision devices for students

Students with visual impairments may employ low vision devices to maximize the effectiveness of their vision. This may include nonoptical aids like dark-lined paper and bold pens which increase contrast on the page.

Optic devices vary greatly in their capabilities, from lighting adjustments to magnification adjustments and handheld or desktop magnifiers (also known as CCTV or closed circuit television) which offer more options for magnification and viewing mode adjustments.

Large Print

Reading can be challenging for students with low vision. Text can often be too small to easily comprehend. To assist visually impaired pupils, teachers can enlarge printed or electronic documents using magnifiers or electronic magnification devices – the amount needed can be determined through clinical assessment.

Students with visual impairments may find it challenging to complete classroom activities and navigate their school environment independently. Some may require help locating large-print books or resources such as overhead projection equipment or computer labs; other students with vision loss may need a friend or classmate’s guidance through the classroom to locate what they need. Furthermore, many low vision students require assistance managing daily living tasks like grocery shopping, getting around unfamiliar settings (on campus or outside it), paying bills etc.

Some students with low vision find it challenging to learn through visual means alone and prefer tactile exploration of materials instead. Tactile devices offer these students an effective means of exploring materials not available in Braille format and could also supplement or replace pictures that may be difficult for them to perceive or understand.

Handwriting and reading abilities may be affected by print size and letter types; additional criteria that make up an assessment for visual impairment should include being able to distinguish colors, contrast, speed and accuracy reading silently or orally.

Reading aids that may assist students with CVI include magnifiers – handheld and stand-alone models alike – special software can display information in larger text and read it aloud, calculators with large print numbers can make keyboard labels more visible allowing students to find keys on a keyboard more quickly, along with various voice output measurement and household devices that may help complete work efficiently for students with CVI.

Optical Magnification

One of the best low vision aids is a handheld magnifier, which doubles character size while simultaneously reducing glare and making reading easier. Other devices for low vision include computer screen magnifiers that attach directly to your monitor and allow you to increase text size and enhance contrast – these devices are available from many online companies including Kantek who utilize high-grade fresnel lenses that produce distortion-free images – they’re simple and affordable solutions at less than fifteen dollars each.

Writing Aids

Reading and writing are core skills necessary for academic success in children with low vision. Students often require learning how to utilize various adapted writing aids for successful writing practices. These assistive technology tools may include various items, including thick black lines on white paper available at stationery stores and pens with bold, thick tips that add contrast while writing. Students may require positioning aids to secure a steady grip on their pen or pencils. A low vision specialist may recommend electronic magnifiers which offer the widest field of view, most comfortable viewing distances and highest magnification levels for maximum success in reading tasks.

Optic devices like hand-held magnifiers, focusable stand magnifiers and head-borne nonprescription devices can help enlarge objects or text for reading without using a computer, smartphone or tablet. Hand-held magnifiers offer flexibility when it comes to magnification by allowing users to adjust both distance between object and eyes as well as size of lens – this may cost anywhere between less than one hundred dollars for handheld magnifiers to several thousand dollars for video magnifiers.

Children may rely on their near visual acuity to improve their ability to see close objects through accommodation, squinting, or moving closer. Each child will require different magnification levels when performing close tasks – the low vision specialist can suggest what might work best.

OrCam devices, a type of voice-activated eyeglass-mounted camera that instantly reads books, menus, product labels, screens and signs; are another effective optical device designed to improve quality of life for students with low vision.

Low vision specialists can assist children in finding the most effective ways to incorporate low vision devices into their daily life, including making sure that they feel at ease when using them and do not become fatigued by excessive use or poor posture. Furthermore, these specialists may recommend additional tools such as assistive lighting and more durable handwriting/drawing materials that will aid children’s day-to-day activities.


Students with low vision must notify their colleges of their disability to receive accommodations that can make classes accessible and effective for them. Under both the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, colleges are legally obliged to offer accommodations and services to students with disabilities; colleges with visual impairments may benefit from using tools that assist them in meeting curriculum tasks – some tools may work more effectively with certain conditions than others.

Optic aids include optical magnification devices like glasses, hand-held magnifiers or telescopes to amplify text or images enlargements; magnification can also enhance contrast or color enhancements for increased readability and visual comfort. Such aids may provide students with low vision a simple solution when combined with larger print books and materials.

Other non-optical tools that may assist a student with low vision include line trackers or reading guides. These devices help a reader stay on the line they are reading and reduce frustration when encountering dense text. In addition, sheets of colored acetate may be kept handy to reduce extraneous glare from pages and improve contrast of text or images.

Students with vision impairments often find it challenging to access mainstream technology due to a lack of accessibility options. Luckily, several free open source programs exist which give blind and visually impaired users voice-controlled access to computers, tablets and phones – these programs allow students to navigate the screen of their device, take photos/video, navigate web pages/text, perform calculations on computers, change letter kerning settings on computers, check weather/time reports/open apps as well as perform calculations!

Other non-computer based solutions for students with low vision or CVI include Braille blocks (plastic boxes with Braille characters to assist in instruction), Braille keyboard, beeper balls (acoustic play balls), money management software and adapted gym instruments. There are also plenty of resources online dedicated to low vision students including access software that’s free to download; other resources require only verification of disability status for use.

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