Department of Special Education
SPU 302 Adapting Materials and Methods of Instruction and Evaluation for Teaching
Students with Visual Impairments
This course provides strategies for teaching and adapting materials and instruction in content areas, communication skills (i.e. - reading and writing braille, reading and writing print with and without low vision devices, finger spelling), listening skills, use of technology, independent and daily living skills, habilitation, career/vocational concerns, physical education, transition from the educational setting, and leisure and recreation for students with visual impairments, including multiple disabilities and deafblindness. The course provides a theoretical framework for the concept of teacher as lifelong learner, assessment strategies for learning medium and reading medium, writing IEP's, and research applications. 3 s.h. 4 c.h. Prerequisite: SPU 300.
This course is designed to prepare students to approach the concept of a visual disability and individuals with a visual disability in a systematic and reflective manner. This course also prepares students to address the unique needs of students who are deafblind. The course is intended to translate theory into practice and to provide applicable information for dealing with exceptional learners in diverse and multicultural settings. SPU 302 is designed to inform the student about the body of research literature that is available, including educational, ethical, and political issues.
Teachers of students with visual impairments must possess the ability to provide disability specific instruction and adaptation of materials in all content areas. Teachers must be able to complete thorough assessment of learning medium and reading medium to assure students the most appropriate education, and opportunity for further education or competitive employment after leaving the educational system. Students must become teachers who realize learning does not end at graduation, therefore, to become an exceptional teacher one must continue to learn throughout their lifetime.
The term “visual impairment” includes students with and without additional disabilities, and includes students from birth and up. At the completion of the course the teacher candidate will demonstrate:
1.Knowledge of federal entitlements that provide specialized equipment and
materials for individuals with visual impairment.
2.Knowledge of the relationships among assessments, individualized education plan
development, and placement as they affect vision-related services.
3.Knowledge of model programs for students with visual impairments.
4.Knowledge of services, networks, organizations and publications relevant to the
field of visual impairment; the development of skills to participate in the activites
of professional organizations in the field of visual impairment (including
consumer groups of and for persons with visual impairment).
5.Knowledge of specialized terminology, ethical condiderations, laws, polices in
visual impairment and in assessing students with visual impairment.
6.Knowledge of specialized polices on screening, prefreferral, referral, indentification and placement procedures for students with visual impairment.
7.Knowledge of alternative assessment techniques and interpretation and
application of scores from assessments of students with visual impairments.
8.Knowledge of the specialized curriculum for all students with visual impairments, and the perspective of normal growth and development.
9.Knowledge of and skills in creating environments that teach and encourage
students with visual impairments to use self advocacy skills, to use thinking, problem-solving, and other cognitived strategies for the development of
independence and the use of these skills to be independent.
10.Knowledge of, strategies and skills for designing, adapting, and modifying
materials (braille, accessible print and other formats), methods, environments, and
instruction to enhance instruction for students with visual impairments based on
the implications of the eye condition and related conditions, including the use of secondary senses when vision is impaired.
11.Skills in the selection and use of technologies to accomplish instructional objectives for individuals with visual impairment.
12.Skills in preparing, obtaining, and organizing special materials to implement
instructional goals for students with visual impairment.
13.Knowledge of and skills in the design of multisensory learning environments that
encourage active participation by student with visual impairment in group and
14.Knowledge of and strategies for prepaing students with progressive eye
conditions to achieve a positive transition to alternative skills.
15.Knowledge and application of methods for teaching communication skills to
students with visual impairments including students with multiple disabilities and
deafblindness (includes handwriting and signature writing).
16.Application of the principles of special methods for teaching students with visual
impairments through analysis and modification of the various areas of the regular
curriculum (i.e.- social studies, science, art…).
17.Knowledge and strategies for teaching the use of abacus, talking calculator, tactile
graphic, and adapted science equipment.
18.Knowledge and the ability to teach compensatory auditory skills, including use of
19.The ability to adapt language arts instruction and materials in the regular classroom for students with visual impairments.
20.Knowledge of, creativity and resourcefulness in the selection and use of adapted
materials, equipment and other learning devices used in teaching students who
visually impaired including, deafblind.
21.Knowledge of and strategies for teaching typing and keyboarding skills.
22.Knowledge of and strategies for teaching technology skills to individuals with
23.Knowledge of and strategies for teaching independent living skills (daily living
skills), social skills, and functional life skills to students with visual impairment.
24.Knowledge of and strategies for teaching adapted physical education, recreational
skills, and lifelong activities to students with visual impairment.
25.Knowledge of and strategies for teaching career-vocational skills and providing
vocational counseling for students with visual impairment.
26.Knowledge of and strategies for teaching self-advocacy skills to students with
27.Skills in preparing students to access information and services from the local
community and other communities the student may be in (i.e. university
community, new town …).
28.Skills in prepaing students with visual impairments to respond to societal attitudes
29.Knowledge of and skills in the sequencing, implementing and evaltation of
learning objectes based on the core curriculum and the expanded core curriculum
for students with visual impairment.
30.Knowledge of and skills in the interpretation of eye reports, other vision related
diagnostic information, the adaptation and application of formal and informal
disability specific assessment techniques for students with visual impairments,
including the use of reading assessments for determining reading mode and
31.Knowledge of and skills in gathering background information, family history and
maintaining disability-related records for individuals with visual impairment.
32.Knowledge of and skills in interpreting and using assessment data for
instructional planning for students with visual impairment.
33.The ability to apply relevant methodologies (i.e. - vision stimulation) to students
with visual impairments who also have multiple disabilities or who are deafblind
and to special populations such as bilingual and culturally diverse.
34. Knowledge and strategies for teaching organization, study skills, understanding
the school environment for students with visual impairments.
35.Knowledge of the roles of, and the skills to consult and collaborate with, other
professionals, paraprofessionals, and parents in meeting individual student needs.
36.Skills in structuring and supervising the activities of paraeducatios and turors who
work with students who are visually impaired.
37.Use of technology in the education of students with visual impairments for
facilitating learning, independent living, and employment.
38.Knowledge of role models with visual impairment and their importance.
39.The ability to evaluate research and apply findings to the instruction of students
with visual impairments.
40. Knowledge of and skills in writing and implementing an IEP.
41.Knowledge of strategies for assisting families and other team members in
planning appropriate transitions for students with visual impairments.
42. An understanding of the concept of teacher as lifelong learner.
43. The ability to critically discuss issues and trends in special education and the field
of visual impairment and the unique characteristics of students with visual
impairments, including students with multiple disabilities or deafblindness, from
diverse multicultural settings and the influence of the characteristics and
experiences on educational assessment, diagnosis, placement, instructional
planning, and management.
Assessment of each student’s level of accomplishment with reference to course objectives will be based upon a subset of the following:
1.Successfully complete a vision assessment and write a report. Includes functional
vision assessment, learning media assessment, environmental assessment, travel
screening and other vision related assessments.
2.Create an IEP for a student with visual impairment based on an assessment package and case study.
3.Role play a teacher for students with visual impairment and other team members
in classroom IEP meetings.
4.Create adapted materials in academic subjects and other school subjects such as
art, PE and music.
5.Role play social and educational interaction with parents, para-educators, teachers
6.Demonstrate through hands on use of specialized equipment.
7.Create a comprehensive schedule of services including all educational
interventions, specialized interventions, recommendations and time of service on
a case load real students with varying visual impairment, including diverse
cultural backgrounds, psychosocial needs, and varying additional disabilities.
8.Write a research paper on a selected topic following APA and Journal of Visual
9.Complete a final comprehensive examination that covers all courses work in the
program on visual impairment
Note students with visual impairment include students from birth to 21.
I.Competencies of Teachers of Students with Visual Impairments
II.Principles of Special Methods
A.Normal growth and development
B.Disability specific instruction
III.Curricular Adaptation of Instruction and Materials
A.Mathematics, including using the Cranmer Abacus
D.Independent living skills
F.Physical education, leisure, health and wellness
G.Art and music
I.Daily living skills
IV.Curricular Adaptation of Instruction and Materials in Language Arts and Communication
A.Reading and writing skills for students who are blind
B.Reading and writing skills for students with low vision
1.Print with and without optical devices and large print
C.Listening skills for students with visual impairments
D.Applications of braille and print word processing
V.Learning Media Assessment (LMA), Stereotypical Behavior Assessment and
Environmental Assessment as part of Functional Vision Assessment (FVA)
A.Assessment of LMA
B.Miscue analysis in reading assessment
C.LMA in the functional vision assessment process
D.Interpretation of medical reports, including eye specialists
E.Complete a LMA
F.Interpreting LMA data
G.Writing a LMA report
H.Assessment of stereotypical behavior as part of FVA
I.Assessment of the environment as part of FVA
VI. Teaching Students with Visual Impairments who also have Multiple Disabilities,
A.Adaptation of curricula
3.Symbolic and non-symbolic communication
C.Environmental concerns and modifications
E.Finger spelling, tactile and visual communication system
VIII.Applications of Other Technologies for Students with Visual Impairments
IX.The Individual Education Plan (IEP)
A.Participation in IEP meetings
B.Writing the IEP
C.Implementing the IEP
D.Collaborative teaching to expand instruction of IEP objectives
E.Use of the analysis of student behavior in making educational decisions during the
development of the IEP
X.Teacher as Lifelong Learner Model
XI. Trends, Issues, and Related Research
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