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OPT002: Low Vision 2 - Practical

This module aims to provide eye care practitioners with the practical training to provide a high standard of low vision care for people with visual impairment.

Start dateSeptember
Duration24 contact hours over one academic term
Credits10 credits - CET points available
PrerequisitesOPT001
Module tutorsMarek Karas (Leader)
Rebecca John (Leader)
Barbara Ryan
Module codeOPT002

Additional information: This module complements OPT006 and OPT007. It also forms part of the Low Vision Service Wales Accreditation when completed alongside OPT001.

There will be two practical training days that require attendance in Cardiff.

This module, along with OPT001, is accredited by The College of Optometrists for the Professional Certificate in Low Vision.

Learning objectives

To acquire knowledge and understanding at an advanced level about:

  • what people with low vision might want and need to do
  • the roles of other professionals and services that support people with low vision.

To apply this knowledge to given scenarios and demonstrate how you would:

  • adapt the normal optometric routine to a patient with visual impairment
  • determine the comprehensive case history of a low vision patient and prioritise their needs
  • measure visual function as part of a low vision assessment
  • determine appropriate magnification and provide advice on contrast and lighting
  • prescribe and dispense a high addition or hyperocular low vision aid
  • adapt the refractive component of your assessment.

To analyse a situation and suggest appropriate management of a patient with respect to:

  • appropriate referral and reporting, and in particular when people require social services intervention
  • management plans for a holistic support strategy.

How the module will be delivered

This module is taught by means of practical training in the form of workshops. These are delivered over a two-day period. Supporting resources and references will be supplied via Learning Central, the university's virtual learning environment. In addition, there will be a welcome webinar, and a webinar part-way though the term discussing methods of establishing magnification. There will also be formative learning sessions. Discussions boards accessed via Learning Central will provide a platform for students to discuss any questions or queries that come up throughout the term with both the course tutors and their peers.

Syllabus content

The practical workshops, online discussions and written submission will cover the following areas:

  • history and symptoms
  • goal setting and prioritising need
  • visual acuity, contrast sensitivity and visual fields in low vision
  • estimating magnification
  • spectacle mounted high addition low vision aids
  • optical low vision aids and their use
  • non-optical low vision aids and adaptations
  • practical contrast enhancement in everyday life
  • referral to other agencies and professionals.

How the module will be assessed

Formative

Students will have access to interactive examples of calculating LogMAR acuity and contrast sensitivity.

Summative

Practical assessment (50%): Students will be assessed carrying out a full low vision assessment on a volunteer low vision patient.

Written coursework (50%): Students will be required to create a ‘directory’ of low vision services provided in their area. The pass mark for each component is 50%. Students must pass the module overall, and also pass each individual component.

Skills that will be practised and developed

Academic skills:

  • to be aware of recent research in visual impairment and accepted clinical practice in the discipline
  • collate information from a number of resources to improve learning
  • the interpretation of data.

Subject-specific skills:

  • advancing own knowledge and understanding to higher level
  • develop empathy with people who have visual impairment
  • to develop practical skills to assess and manage people with visual impairment
  • appropriate referral pathways.

Generic skills:

  • time management
  • working independently
  • develop IT skills, particularly with respect to online discussion forums
  • Improve problem solving skills
  • communication skills.