Month: June 2015

Direct Assessment: Impact of Color and More…

When I want to do a CVI assessment for a child, but I end up carrying so many items especially if I don’t know the child’s visual functioning level at all.

All assessments of CVI require three parts: parent interview, observation and direct assessment. After the parent interview and observation, I want to have everything on hand for the direct assessment. For the impact of color, I used to carry several sizes of like items such as 6 colors of pom-poms or 6 colors of balls. My bag was huge!

Now I just carry a great assortment of fabrics. As Halloween approaches, I found fabrics of all the colors, all of which have a shiny side and a duller colored side. I can now assess:

  • The child’s reactions to color.
  • The child’s reaction to shiny versus duller.
  • The child’s best distance.
  • The child’s need for increased fabric size to reduce complexity (what size fabric presentation does the child need before looking).
  • The child’s need for light (does the child need me to add another light shining on the fabric to draw visual attention).
  • The child’s need for motion (does the child need me to move the fabric to draw visual attention).
  • The child’s delay for looking.
  • The child’s better visual field.
  • The time and quality of reaching to play with my fabric.

It’s Halloween at the fabric store! Lighten your load and have a great set of assessment materials!

Direct Assessment Tool for CVI

I love to find a CVI direct assessment tool that helps me assess children’s skills! This avoids having to carry so many things!

The iPad app is called Flashlight-Tiny Flashlight by Discussion Works Version 2.4.

I believe I got it for free or for very low cost.

There are 5 tools

  • Large, white on-screen target that turns on and off
  • Alternating yellow lights that blink one at a time on the left and right of the screen
  • Flashing screen of multiple changing colors (might be too much for some children)
  • White light bulb image
  • Full screen colors: you swipe horizontally to change the color (red, orange-yellow, light green, medium green, light blue, blue, violet, light purple, hot pink) and vertically to change the color’s brightness. This is my favorite tool in the app.

The full screen color tool allows you to check reactions to non-complex targets, check color preferences, check reaction to colors in different visual fields, and check latency time.

Using this app, you can assess light sensitivity, color avoidance, and for the children who require backlighting, it provides a lighted target to optimize looking and provide a target with motion.  The iPad can be presented at various distances to get the measure of best target distance. The child might even reach for this interesting object and you will see the quality of their visual motor skills.

Love it!

Research: How Your Brain is “Wired” in Ocular and Cortical/Cerebral Visual Impairment


The Laboratory for Visual Neuroplasticity at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary/ Harvard Medical School is investigating how the human brain adapts to visual impairment and builds compensatory skills. Using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), the team hopes to understand vision in the brain both in structure and function. This is important research to help understand CVI. Perhaps, someday, this research will help diagnose CVI and direct interventions to improve visual functioning.

This is the criteria for eligibility for this study:

  • Must be 14-45 years old and have binocular visual impairment


  • Must be 14-24 years old with cortical visual impairment.

Participation will include two sessions that are 1 hour each (for training and the scanning

Total compensation is $80.00

To participate contact The Laboratory for Visual Neuroplasticity 617-573-3794 or visit the website

Follow on Facebook: CVI Neuroplasticity Research Group