University of Edinburgh

Helping children with poor vision due to damage to the brain

Presented on Tuesday 16 January 2007

Course evaluation summary

Number of Participants: 80;
Number of Respondents: 67

Overall Assessment: 

How would you rate the following: Excellent = 1; Poor = 5

Enhancement to your expertise


Content and supplementary material


How will you use what you have learned today?

To better understand my son who is visually impaired.
Will take new info away and start using it immediately with children in mainstream schools and school for children with severe and complex needs.
It has helped me to become interested in an area that I will endeavour to learn more about through future CPD opportunities.
More confident about working with/trying things with children with multiple disabilities. In providing materials/help for children eg; in insisting on very simplified diagrams etc.
I will incorporate in day-to-day support and work with individuals.
Pass on up-to-date information to practitioners.
A couple of assessment ideas to try.
For a child with severe coloboma starting nursery soon, I shall suggest some areas be made 'Feng Shui' and maybe use of pushing pram/buggy to increase confidence moving around.
I will use suggested approaches with children I work with. There are so many ideas to take away from today to use with MDVI children.
Daily in my examination of all patients, be they visually impaired or not!
In my role of VI teacher, I will be more informed to support parents, teachers and children.  One school has recently asked if I could talk to staff and I will be able to use some of the info from today's course. Thank you.
Discussion and recommendations with parents and teachers. Disseminate this information to VI teachers.
To aid working within a functional vision assessment team and general practice.
In carrying out Functional Vision Assessment and compiling the report. Additional info learned especially in terms of strategies.
Greater understanding of patient symptoms and correlation with parents' observations.
Useful in functional visual assessment clinics. Greater awareness.
Information useful for children I work with.
In my role as class based teacher, all material/info is invaluable in understanding pupil's level of functional vision and how we/I present curriculum, adapting it for each pupil.
Disseminate amongst colleagues, peers, parents and NHS staff.
In delivery of training within my own role as a rehabilitation/training officer.
Re-evaluate working processes.
In my practice with pupils and parents. To develop my knowledge and understanding of VI in children with brain damage.
In assessing children's functional vision and recommending strategies for enhancing it.
Read it and take strategies into schools. Use it for observation purposes.
Help in supporting children with visual impairment.
In clinical work - think more about visual implications of Cerebral Palsy etc. and what visual assessment is needed. (Get all the children using hyoseine patches to the Optician/ Opthalmologist!)
To support parents and schools in my local authority in my role as a VI teacher.
Reassess the suitability of the surroundings in my classroom taking into account the children's visual difficulty.
As a VI support teacher, I will use much of this info. Also, in particular I will be looking at our Functional Vision Assessment materials in a new light, eg; "Look and Think", an old resource, which could be updated.
Adopt assessment techniques, offer informed advice to schools, parents. Cite in chartered teacher work.
Enhanced understanding of visual problems; be more aware when carrying out assessments. Alter some practice.
Spread the message!
I hope to use information to help pupil on my current caseload.
Summarise notes and photocopy supplementary material - pass onto relevant staff members.
I will apply this to my practice when working with VI children in school.
I'll share what I have learned with other teachers of the visually impaired and pass on tips to class teachers and parents.
Put this into place in my teaching.
Within practical rehab and mobility training.
To have a better understanding of the implications of damage to the brain and to apply some of the practical solutions.
Apply information in my teaching.
I will apply in a practical manner with caseload of children.
Make the VI reading material more meaningful to me.
This course has given me more of an insight into the difficulties faced by VI children as well as children without VI in a mainstream classroom. Info on visual overload/overcrowding etc, was very interesting and useful.
As a basis to find out more about VI children/impairment. To aid teaching eg; improve 'environment' for working with pupils.
Help our daughter develop her full potential. To pass on info to her school etc.
Insight into many visual problems of our Cerebral Palsy children and ideas for remediation.
Clearer understanding of the many different areas of VI I may come across.
Pass information/ideas onto parents of VI children. Keep info in mind when assessing clients/providing training.
It has given me a better understanding of the effects of damage to the brain and how to work more effectively with these children.
Reflect on presentation. Read handouts and consider in relation to my pupils.
I will apply it in a practical way with clients.
To help and inform my work as a VI teacher.
Overall understanding of different types of Visual Impairment.
Better understand the pupils difficulties with sight. Adapt learning methods to suit need better.
Being able to explain concepts better to parents and teachers. To offer practical advice.
Apply to interactions/planning/advice for others.
Improve understanding of difficulties. Influence my practice and choice of resources.  Improve empathy for child and family.
In my work will practise it day-to-day in work capacity. My awareness increased.
Increased awareness.
I work with adults that have LD and VI. I often carry out functional and clinical vision assessment. The information obtained will support and enhance my knowledge and information on practical advice for others.
I shall use the information about visually impaired and learning disabled persons to relate to actions that can be taken to deliver 'real world' solutions for the problems encountered by the persons.
Able to use information with my clients.
In parenting my child effectively.

How would you rate the following: Excellent = 1; Poor = 5

Clarity of presentation


Pacing of course/event


What was best about the course/event?

All aspects - everything was useful (7).
The presenter.  Very informative not to mention entertaining. Very human and accessible to all.  Love his spontaneity with audience.
Attunement of presentation to audience needs. Jargon kept to a minimum. Clear, concise and entertaining.
The relaxed and informal but very informative presentation (2).
Practical applications.
Stories and practical ideas to try.
Stimulating and clear delivery. Related to courses and stories of experiences.  Professor Dutton's ability to move back and forth to audience questions and content.
The relaxed style of presentation and humorous stories/examples. The Powerpoint delivery was excellent in spite of technical problems initially.
Simple ideas making great improvements to someone's life.
The examples and anecdotes. The slides which simulated conditions were very good.
Practical ideas generated (2).
I felt the course built significantly on my existing knowledge. I realise I have a lot more to learn. My enthusiasm is renewed to improve my FVA reports.
The speaker and hearing parents' comments.
High standard of presentation.
The morning session on the visual system was excellent. The ability to relate theory with practice.
Presentation of anatomy of eye in the morning laid foundation for a stimulating and informative course.
The presentation and examples of VI pupils, stories from parents and professionals in the audience.
Very interesting to have new update of this material.
Excellent speaker! (4) Video examples of reduced VA, contrast sensitivity and visual field absence.
Content of the course and its relevance to practice.
Learning about different parts of the vision brain.
Translating problems into action approaches/solutions.
Very clear, very interesting presentation of material by very knowledgeable speaker able to talk to my level of understanding (10).
Vast amount of information about complexity of visual system. Use of analogies to provide examples.
Professor Dutton's understanding and depth of knowledge (4).
Information gleaned.
Ideas to use in the classroom/dinner hall.
Very interesting and relevant, practical ideas. Theory and research applied to helping children.
Clear descriptions. I have strategies which I can try for different problems.
Easy to understand language - very practically based. Audience participation - as heard real stories from parents.
Great explanation and examples to what is normally a confusing subject.
Pace good; subject made interesting; materials/Powerpoint good.
Explanation of ideas, theories and examples given. Attitude of lecturer - welcoming questions/ keeping direction.
Information provided was easy to understand (2). Good, practical advice and tips. The course covered a great deal which is excellent but it was a lot to take in.
Acquiring new information. Opportunities for break which allowed for discussion.
Clarity of presentation. Plenty of examples (2).
Clear information. Real life examples both from presenters and parents (2). Great overflow including importance of language all delivered with enthusiasm and humour.
Reasons for visual impairment.
Amount and relevance of info.
The overall event was best but if pushed, it would be the anecdotal stories and 'case notes' of Professor Dutton that gave colour to the event.
The way it was presented to everyone.

What, if anything, could have been improved about the course?

The venue (2). Problems with projector (16). Lunch - (not enough sandwiches for people in attendance) (6).
Tea break. Short AM.
Absolutely nothing but having more time to absorb the huge amount of information given to us.
The other 21 days he said he could deliver!
Perhaps pre-course reading material for people new to this area.
Provide a diagram of the anatomy of brain and the diagrammatic representation of the visual systems so that audience has this in front of them during the lecture.
Copy of the slides.
Cold in lunch area (3). Not enough seating for lunch (2).
Reference to context of other ASNS, eg; intellectual. ADHD.
Lots of loitering involved but it was good having the 5 minute breaks.
Room was cold.
It was great to have regular mini breaks but would have preferred to have a 10-15 minute break to grab a drink and move about.
Lunch venue.
Simple handouts with summary (2).
Maybe shorter lunch time.

Any other comments regarding the course?

Not absolutely sure if medics, parents, educators and social workers can be spoken to adequately at once to everyone's satisfaction.
Excellent - would recommend to all colleagues working in schools with children with VI.
Generally an excellent day - good information and enjoyable (3).
Excellent! (2)
First time I have had the opportunity to hear Professor Dutton - well worth the wait!  Excellent - hope I will get further opportunity.
You always learn something you didn't know from Gordon.
Really useful info/advice.
Always keen to attend Professor Dutton's courses.
Lunch was a bit sad!
List of delegates not provided; asked by course participant if we had this.
Would have liked more printed handouts of the material.
Handouts on specific areas of the brain talked about.
Having a list of headings (with nomenclature, eg; medical terms in brackets) would aid audience to listen better to the (excellent) examples.
Very informative day (3).
I thought there might be a bit more about children with visual and additional disabilities/less cognitively able (MDVI); Cerebral Palsy.
Some discourse re learning difficulties in this context.
Very good course - more please!
Very interesting seminar.
Very useful to have parents' comments.
10.00 - 12.00 - a 15 minute break would have been welcome. 
Not enough sandwiches at lunch (3).
Very captivating lecture.
Unfortunate that projector was poor in the morning but actually gave better understanding of contrast etc.
Consistent and eloquent presentation.
Well worth coming to. Good use of examples and anecdotes.
Excellent visual presentations, despite problems with OHP (2). Good to hear parents' views about what has worked for them first hand.
Handouts of Powerpoint presentation - could they be available to us? (2)
Found it very good. Would highly recommend it.
Very enjoyable and worthwhile.
Course was great. Professor Dutton made a complex subject totally understandable and enjoyable.
Overall a very good course.

Location and Venue
Convenient location for this course: No Response 8; Yes 58; No 1

Excellent = 1; Poor = 5

Convenience of venue


Quality of venue


Likely to attend if venue was used again: No Response 10; Likely 54 ; Less Likely 3

With a better projector and quantity of lunch!
With a bigger lunch!
Subject matter more important (2).
No lunch left for folks at the end of the queue!
Lack of seating at lunch time was a problem as was poor projector.
If warmer and not as cold in buffet area.

What other CPD training would you like the SSC to provide?

Info re children who have VI damage/brain damage due to brain tumour/treatment.  Dual Sensory Impairment in mainstream schools. Info specially on children with CVI as a result of Cerebral Palsy.
How to train a child to use their LVAs.
Workshop on supporting VI children with 'occasional' visits. What is common practice? What paperwork do people use? What systems of evaluation?
Mobility. Early intervention. Active Learning. CPI training/assessment - Revisit all.
Visual assessment, management and visual aids for the pre-school/younger child (or very delayed child) - outside specialist hospital setting.
Sharing vision assessment tools for MDVI and ideas for activities.
Working with difficult people.
Similar on Saturdays.
Similar events on other aspects of visual impairments.
Information and demonstration of useful materials/textbooks etc.
Course particularly for children under 5. I work as a teacher with children from birth to 5 who all have additional support needs.
More info on acquired brain injury.

Outcomes Assessment

If you are a teacher, how would you rate this course in relation to the following "Chartered Teacher Standard" components: Very useful = 1; not useful = 5

your professional values and personal commitment


your professional knowledge and understanding


your professional and personal attributes