Developmental Disabilities

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Techniques for Infants and Toddlers with Visual Impairment - Conclusions

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Conclusions from Developmental Studies

by Alycyn Ferrell and Sharon A. Raver

All of these studies suggest delays in skill acquisition, but they also draw four other conclusions.

  1. Visual impairment poses a significant risk to early child development.
  2. Handicapping conditions in addition to visual impairment compound the developmental risk.
  3. Many skills are not acquired because they have not been introduced. Several authors cite the correspondence between opportunity and acquisition.
  4. There is tremendous variability in each sample studied. The interactive nature of development and the range of variables affecting infants with visual impairment make it impossible to establish cause and effect relationships or to predict the developmental course for individual children.


In 1989, Dr. Turben received funding that enabled the Cleveland Sight Center to initiate the first large-scale, family-centered Children's Services Program in Cleveland, Ohio. Dr. Turben worked for Lake County Early Intervention Collaborative Group in 1988-89 as the consultant who prepared the County Needs Assessment and assisted the collaborative in the preparation of the 1988-89 Lake County Early Intervention Collaborative Plan, which launched family collaboratives as a network of families with children who had disabilities.
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