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An individual is considered legally blind when they cannot see at six metres what someone with normal vision can see at 60 metres. A person is legally blind if their field of vision is less than 20 degrees in diameter. A person with normal vision can see 180 degrees.
The term ‘Vision Impairment’ simply means an individual has some degree of sight loss.
The impact of a student’s vision impairment on learning will vary significantly according to the nature and extent of sight loss.1
Inclusion is the preferred educational option. School systems make every effort to do this. If it is not possible, they use either special classes or special schools with curriculum and staffing modifications.
This page looks at associations, selected educational sites including schools and teaching centres and vision technology.
The Special Education Resources page provides further options.
- Australian Braille Authority [ABA]
‘Oversees the development and maintenance of Braille codes and specifications used in Australia’.
- Australian Childhood Vision Impairment Register
‘A major research project to develop and maintain an Australia wide record of children with vision impairment’.
- Blind Citizens Australia
‘The united voice of Australians who are blind or vision impaired’.
- Retina Australia
‘Committed to raising funds for research into the detection, prevention, treatment and cure of inherited retinal dystrophies’.
- Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind
Their Useful Links listing is good.
- The Fred Hollows Foundation
- Vision 2020 Australia
‘A partnership of over 50 organisations from the eye health and vision care sector’.
- Vision Australia
‘Largest provider of blindness and low vision services in Australia’. Information covers :
- How the Eye Works
- Seeing Eye Dogs Australia
- Support Groups
State listings as well as a national listing.
- Association for the Blind of WA
Includes Guide Dogs WA. Information, publications, personal stories.
‘We provide community services to South Australian children and young people who have sensory impairments’.
- Guide Dogs NSW/ACT
- Guide Dogs SA.NT
‘Discover the services Guide Dogs SA.NT offers and how you can help us to provide innovative solutions’.
- Guide Dogs Victoria
- Queensland Blind Association
Information, multiple directories. Topics from Adaptive Technology to Queensland Support Groups.
- The Royal Society for the Blind
‘Providing services to South Australians who have a severe vision impairment’.
- Alliance for Equality of Blind Canadians
Working ‘to increase awareness of rights and responsibilities’. Canada.
- American Foundation for the Blind
Information under 4 main headings, search engine. Linked sites include VisionAware, ‘A comprehensive resource for basic information about adjusting to vision loss’. USA.
- Canadian National Institute for the Blind
Information, resources. English and French. Canada.
- Foundation Fighting Blindness
‘To drive the research that will provide preventions, treatments and cures for people affected by’ a range of conditions. Ireland.
- National Federation of the Blind
‘Improves blind people’s lives through advocacy, education, research, technology, and programs encouraging independence and self-confidence’. USA.
- Royal National Institute of the Blind
Information, resources. UK.
- Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind
‘Provider of vision-related services to blind, deafblind and vision-impaired people’. NZ.
- Sightsavers International
‘Works to combat blindness in developing countries, restoring sight through specialist treatment and eye care’. UK.
‘The professional body in matters pertaining to the education and support of children and young people who are blind or have low vision within the South Pacific region’.
- World Blind Union
‘The only organisation entitled to speak on behalf of blind and partially sighted persons of the world’. Canada.
Check other relevant state/territory links on the main Special Education page.
- ACT Disability Education Section
Special education including those with a visual disability.
- Disability Programs NSW
Special education including those with a visual disability.
- Program for Students with Disabilities Handbook
Victorian. Information, downloadable documents, vision impairment support, guidelines.
- Programs for Children and Students with Additional Needs [SA]
Select “Vision Impairment” from the listing.
- School of Special Educational Needs : Sensory [WA]
‘Providing educational support for children with vision impairment and/or hearing loss’.
- Vision Brochure - TAFE NSW
Blindness and vision impairment assistance available for TAFE students. Find Services at individual institutes here.
- Vision Impairment
Education Queensland. Definition, verification, criteria, more.
- Vision Impairment - Northern Territory
Overview, links to further information.
Selected Schools & Teaching Centres
- Insight Education for the Vision Impaired
Includes both a primary school and a Centre of Excellence. Victoria.
- Kilparrin [SA]
‘Provides on-site preschool and school programs and a statewide support service for learners with complex sensory impairment/s and additional disabilities’.
- Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Schools
- St. Edmund’s [NSW]
Catholic special high school. Vision Support is found here
- St Lucy’s School [NSW]
‘Excellence in education for children with disabilities’. Primary.
- South Australian School for Vision Impaired
Specific school and services which it co-ordinates across the state.
Includes aspects such as audio and large print, braille, etc..
- Access Technology for Students
Select from among the Braille topics. Victoria.
- Access Technology for Students 
Sections from Apps to Camps and Activities. Victorian.
Multiple directories, Fact Sheets, Instruction, Transcription, Books & Magazines, more. USA.
- Braille [Wikipedia]
Alphabet, Braille Cell, writing, transcription, Braille for other scripts, links.
- Braille Bug
Helps primary level children, without vision difficulties, gain a better understanding of Braille.
- Braille Factsheet
Better Health, Victoria. Grades, history, braille technology, using braille at home, more.
- Braille on the Internet
Description, history, Louis Braille, organisations, research, software, educational materials, transcription services. USA.
- Braille Past, Present and Future
Royal National Institute of Blind People, UK.
Includes areas such as software, technical equipment, etc..
‘Largest supplier of adaptive technology to the education, corporate and government sectors in Australia’.
- Adaptive Technology Consultancy Service
Information, advice, assessment, advice on options and technical support services.
- Assistive Technology
Annotated links. USA.
- Supporting Students |[Statewide Vision Resource Centre]
‘Choose from the options on the left to take a look at what we have to offer’.
- Technology Advice and Support
‘Vision Australia offers a range of advice and support services that you can access including one on one consultancy, the Adaptive Technology Helpdesk as well as tools to help you help yourself’.
‘Uses GPS and digital maps to help blind persons find their way in urban and rural areas’.
- Using Technology
Beginners Guides, computers and tablets, Phones blog, getting interested in technology videos, more. RNIB, UK.
1. Vision Impairment UoW, 28 Oct. 2009. Web. 14 Feb. 2016. Vision Impairment UoW.