Best practice for teachers of students with visual impairments is to conduct three essential assessments (EA) during the initial evaluation, and throughout each re-evaluation cycle. Performing these three assessments on a regular basis ensures that any changes in functional vision, literacy access tools, and/or instructional needs are monitored to assess and address in a timely manner.
The three EA are:
1. Functional Vision Assessment (FVA): The FVA evaluates the day-to-day functioning of how a child uses their remaining vision across a variety of familiar and unfamiliar environments. This evaluation is conducted to determine how the student’s vision impacts their educational performance.
2. Learning Media Assessment (LMA): The LMA is a systematic way to collect information about a student’s sensory preferences to determine initial selection of literacy medium (print, enlarged print, braille, or dual) as well as provide on-going evaluation of literacy access tools.
3. Expanded Core Curriculum (ECC) Screening Tool: This tool is used to identify the instructional priorities within and across the nine domain areas of the ECC. Once identified and prioritized, specific domain subset areas of focus are assessed. Results lead to the development of annual goals for the provision of specialized instructional programs.
In addition to the essential assessments, other evaluations in areas such as assistive technology and orientation and mobility may be conducted based on the needs of the student.