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OPT002: Low Vision 2 - Practical

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

Start dateMarch
Credits10 credits - CET points available
Module tutorsMarek Karas (Leader)
Rebecca Bartlett (Leader)
Fees£620 - UK and EU students
£1155  - Students from outside the EU
Module codeOPT002

Practitioners in the UK may be eligible to apply for an exemption from OPT001 and begin at OPT002 if they have completed LOCSU Low Vision within the last three years. To receive the College of Optometrists’ Professional Certificate, students must complete one written case discussion which is part of the coursework requirement OPT001. Students who take the exemption route will therefore be required to submit a case discussion during their time on OPT002.

There are CET points available on completion of applicable elements of the module.

Learning objectives

On completion of the module, you should be able to:

  • evaluate and apply modern key concepts of low vision rehabilitation and be able to adapt the normal optometric techniques to a patient with visual impairment, applying them to challenges within your own environment and practice
  • address and reflect on the benefit of inter-professional teamwork in the delivery of low vision rehabilitation
  • present balanced and informed arguments, incorporating critical judgment and decision making in practical assessments
  • effectively reflect on and evaluate learning
  • assess an individual’s needs, the effects of sight impairment on visual function, activities of everyday life and psychological wellbeing, and to rank and prioritise options for management
  • problem solve and develop solutions/management plans in low vision practice based on evidence and sound professional and clinical judgment.

How the module will be delivered

This module is taught by means of practical training in the form of workshops that 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 two webinars part-way though the term discussing methods of establishing magnification.

There will be formative learning sessions along with online discussion boards which 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.

Skills you will practise and develop

Academic skills

  • Advance your own knowledge and understanding
  • Collate and synthesise information from several resources to improve learning
  • Write concisely and clearly for the academic and clinical community
  • Interpret data

Generic skills

  • Manage projects and time
  • Work independently
  • Use a range of IT software packages and online resources
  • Problem solving

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
  • Services provided by other agencies
  • Understanding depression associated with visual impairment

How the module will be assessed

There will be two practical training and assessment days that would normally require attendance in Cardiff. Provisionally the first training day may be delivered online but the second day will require attendance at Cardiff University.  The training and assessment elements of the second day may be delivered using simulated patients.


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


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

Written coursework (50%): You will be required to create a ‘directory’ of low vision services provided in your area.