Authors
Gothwal, Vijaya K. PhD, FAAO; Thomas, Rachel MCOptom; Crossland, Michael PhD; Bharani, Seelam BSOpt; Sharma, Sujata BOptom; Unwin, Hilary BEd; Xing, Wen MSc; Khabra, Komel MSc; Dahlmann-Noor, Annegret MD, PhD

Randomized Trial of Tablet Computers for Education and Learning in Children and Young People with Low Vision

publication date
June 19, 2018
Category
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Abstract/Introduction

SIGNIFICANCE 

Mobile devices such as tablet computers have become widely available as mainstream devices and are also used in some schools, but there is an absence of robust information regarding the efficacy of any optical/electronic low vision device or tablet computer in supporting education of young people with low vision.

 

PURPOSE 

A randomized controlled trial (RCT) is needed to measure the impact of tablet computers on education, specifically on independent access to educational material, in children and young people with low vision. We conducted a pilot RCT to determine the feasibility of conducting a full-scale trial.

 

METHODS 

This was a randomized multicenter pilot trial across two sites in the United Kingdom and one site in India. Forty children and young people aged 10 to 18 years with low vision (best-corrected visual acuity for distance between <20/60 [0.48 logMAR] and 20/400 [1.30 logMAR] in the better eye) in the United Kingdom (n = 20) and India (n = 20) were randomized to two parallel arms, with a 1:1 allocation ratio, to control (n = 20) or intervention (n = 20). Control group participants received standard low vision care. The intervention group received a tablet computer (iPad) with low vision applications and instruction in its use, including accessibility features. Four primary outcomes included (1) 6-month recruitment rate, (2) retention of participants for 3 months, (3) acceptance/usage of device, and (4) accessibility of device


Conclusion/Results

RESULTS 

Nineteen participants (95%) enrolled within 6 months in the United Kingdom, and 20 participants (100%), in India. Retention at 3 months was 85% (n = 17) in the United Kingdom and 95% (n = 19) in India. More than one half of participants reported using a tablet computer at school at least once every day. The majority (90%) found it easily accessible.

 

CONCLUSIONS 

This study demonstrated that it is feasible to recruit children and young people with low vision into an international multicenter RCT of electronic assistive technology. Regardless of geographical location, children and young people with low vision reported using tablet computers at least once a day at school and accessed them easily.


Testimonials


Vision therapy is well worth the response, time and effort. Our Son had a hard time focusing and writing neatly. After vision therapy Seth could complete a task in half the time if previously took. His abilities to focus improved greatly and so did his handwriting.

Also, he was better at listening. As a parent, we wanted learning to be fun for our Son, and vision therapy made this possible.


Amanda T.

Vision Therapy is well worth the expense, time and effort. Our son had a hard time focusing handwriting neatly. After vision therapy Seth could complete a task in half the time it previously took his abilities to focus and improved greatly and so did his handwriting.

Also, he was better at listening. As a parent you wanted learning to be fun for our son and vision therapy made this possible.


Alexa H.

Vision Therapy has given or son the tools he needs to be able to scan and read the written word more effectively and efficiently.

He love working with John and these working sessions give him the motivation to gladly work on his homework assignments.

It amazed us to see the difference in the tracking of his eyes and along a line of it's from the beginning to the end of the treatment.

Dr. McBryar , Kristen and John  are all marvelous and we would recommend them to anyone I only wish that we would have found them sooner!


Charlotte M.

Prior to coming to the institute for vision development my son complained of daily headaches. Therapy has eliminated his headaches completely. I love knowing my son is able to learn pain-free for the rest of his life because of the work that has been done over just a few weeks in this office. He he absolutely loved coming that didn't even feel like going to a doctor or therapy. We are grateful for the relief he was able to find by coming here.

Thank you!


Olivia C.

Seems much less frustrated with life

Reads non-stop and fast

Spelling abilities have been hugely improved

Seems much more confident

Thank You!!!


Kelly O.

When we first came to the practice, my son did not have huge issues, but lots of small ones- trouble with reading, sports (hitting the baseball consistently), coordination, etc- that were not easily detectable,but when put together presented issues. The staff here were all very professional and loving towards him. While I was concerned in the reading, my son was concerned with the athletic side. Seeing improvement night off the bat gave him confidence that i have nor seen in him and made him want to not only Come to therapy, but also made him want to work hard. He has surpassed his grade level and above in reading and hit his first home run this year! Thank you!!!


Alice M.
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