Running head: Hearing and Visual
Hearing and Visual Impairment
Bonnie J. Hatch
Grand Canyon University
May 19, 2010
The abstract of this essay will include information on hearing and visual impairments. It will explain the legal definition of both, the impact that hearing and visual impairment have on a person’s development and education achievement, how humans hear and see and the degrees, types and causes of each. The essay will also go into detailed by supplying a lesson plan which will include the objectives/goals, accommodations/modifications, strategies, assessments, activities as well as including brief description of the student by submitting the ...view middle of the document...
338). It usually affects all frequencies of hearing evenly and can be helped by wearing a hearing aid or corrected medically or surgically.
According to American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) there are four main ways in which hearing loss affects children:
1. It causes delay in the development of receptive and expressive communication skills (speech and language)
2. It may have an impact on vocational choices (ASHA, 2010)
3. The language deficit causes learning problems that result in reduced academic achievement.
4. Communication difficulties often lead to social isolation and poor self-concept.
Vision is said to be a complex process, light enters the eye through the pupil and is collected by photoreceptor neurons in the retina. It then sends signals to a neuron network that then generate electrical impulses which go to the brain. The data is processed in the brain which then sends information about what we are seeing.
The educational definition of visual impairment in the IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) emphasizes the relationship between vision and learning (Heward, 2010, pp.373). Whereas the legal definition of vision impairment or blindness is “visual acuity of 20/200 or worse in the better eye with corrective lenses (20/200 means that a person at 20 feet from an eye chart can see what a person see at 200 feet) or visual field restriction to 20 degrees diameter or less (tunnel vision) in the better eye.” (Definition of Legal Blindness, 2010). Educationally, vision loss is separated into several definitions, partially sighted, low vision, legally blind and totally blind. “Partially sighted” simply means that some form of visual problem has occurred and resulted in a need for special education. Low vision refers to impairments of a severe nature which are not necessarily limited to distance vision. Legally blind is precisely the same definition as the legal definition, and totally blind refers to those students who learn via Braille and other non-visual media.
The causes of visual impairments are grouped into three broad categories: refractive errors, structural impairments and cortical visual impairments (Heward, 2010). There are also other causes of vision loss which are genetic conditions (such as Ushers syndrome), congenital issues (having been present from birth), and accident, illness or disease. Some disabilities are also associated with vision impairment such as epilepsy, down syndrome and sometimes intellectual disabilities. The areas that are particularly affected developmentally and educationally by vision loss are: concept development, interpersonal communication skills, life skills, orientation and mobility skills and academic development.
A vision or hearing loss will negatively affect a child’s development and educational journey if left unattended. There are many resources available, both medical and educational, to help the parent or teacher of a child with a vision or...