- Research & Practice Updates: Supplemental Content for Applied Concepts in Vision Therapy
- Research Update & Overview
Impact of vision therapy on reading performance, and the role of visual function in dyslexia and reading disabilities.
- New - In Press (2009)
Visual Factors in Childhood Behavioural Disorders.
- American Journal of Occupational Therapy 2005
Visual function significantly distinguishes between children with and without reading and academic problems.
- American Optometric Association
The Effectiveness of Vision Therapy in Improving Visual Function.
- Archives of Opthamology 2008
New Research on Convergence Insufficiency.
- Archives of Opthamology 2005
Randomized Trial of Treatment of Amblyopia in Children Aged 7 to 17 Years.
- Archives of Opthamology 2005
Controlled Study Demonstrates Value of Professional Therapy.
- Journal of Learning Disabilities, Nov. 2003
Vision Therapy improves Reading Comprehension.
- Neuropsychologia 2007
Prisms throw light on developmental disorders.
- NeuroRehabilitation 2006
Oculomotor rehabilitation for reading in acquired brain injury.
- Strabismus, Dec. 2005
The Relationship between Convergence Insufficiency and ADHD.
- American Academy of Optometry 2013
PDF Format: Position Paper on Optometric Care of the Struggling Student
- Journal of Behavioral Optometry 2012
PDF Format: Historical Perspectives on Auditory and Visual Processing
- Optometric Education 2011
PDF Format: Private Practice Residency in Vision Therapy and Rehabilitation.
- Optometry & Vision Development 2009
PDF Format: The Role of Optometry in Early Identification of Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Additional ReferencesCiuffreeda KJ The scientific basis for and efficacy of optometric vision therapy in non-strabismic accommodative and vergence disorders. Optometry 2002 Dec; 73 (12):735-62.
This article summarizes models of the accommodative (eye focusing) and vergence (eye teaming systems), as well as cure rates of vision therapy for problems with accommodation and vergence.
Research Confirms Vision Therapy Can Improve Reading Comprehension
Results of a study of sixth grade students with below average reading scores found that providing visual attention therapy can significantly improve their attention and reading comprehension.
The study, reported in the November/December 2003 Journal of Learning Disabilities, found that as few as 12 one-hour sessions of computer-based vision therapy can enhance reading ability and improve a child's overall attention in the classroom. "Results of this study support previous research that found visual attention and eye movement abilities contribute significantly to a child's ability to read", according to Harold A. Solan, O.D., M.A., FCOVD, Distinguished Service Professor of Optometry at the State College of Optometry, State University of New York and lead researcher for the study. "This newest research confirms that visual attention can be improved through vision therapy resulting in enhanced reading comprehension."
"Far too often, children with reading and learning difficulties may struggle in school because of undetected vision problems", stated Dr. Solan. "Difficulties with maintaining visual attention and processing visual information in the classroom doom many children to reading failure. Results of this and other studies now confirm the significance of good visual abilities to reading and learning. Vision abilities needed to succeed in school can be developed through programs of vision therapy which can lead to improvements in reading and learning as found in our study", he stated.
The program of vision therapy provided to the children in the study included specific procedures to improve perceptual accuracy, visual efficiency and visual search and scanning abilities. Additional procedures to enhance how the eyes and brain process visual information were also conducted. Children in the study were tested before and after the therapy using standardized measures of attention processing. The children receiving vision therapy showed significant gains in standardized attention scores and reading comprehension. In terms of learning rate (LR), these students reading skills progressed 1.1 years or 220%.
Visual attention therapy procedures, a part of optometric vision therapy services, have often been used in treating patients with learning-related vision problems. "This study further confirms the benefits of vision therapy that developmental optometrists have clinically reported in their patients for many years. Vision therapy, a prescribed program of visually guided procedures or 'exercises', is used to help the eyes work together and with the brain to properly interpret visual information", reported Dr. Solan.
According to the College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD), many children have difficulty getting their eyes and brains to work together. Most often these problems are not related to how clearly they can see the board at the front of the classroom – 20/20 visual acuity- but how effectively their eyes and brain acquire and process what they are seeing. "Parents and teachers need to consider vision problems first when children continuously struggle with their school work or have behavior problems", says Leonard J. Press, O.D., FCOVD, President of COVD. To learn more about how vision problems can affect learning visit www.covd.org.