Skip to main content


Supporting Learners Series: Identification and Referral

Designed with the whole child in mind, this module focuses on identifying physical signs and academic difficulties that could suggest a student has a visual impairment and how to make a referral to have a vision evaluation completed. It also addresses how related service providers play a key role in supporting students by promoting access and accommodations in the learning environment.

Learning Objectives:

  • Explain the whole child approach to working with students with visual impairments.
  • Describe the range of various visual impairments and how they may impact students.
  • Identify signs that indicate a student may have a visual impairment.
  • Describe how to make a referral for a student with a possible visual impairment.
  • Differentiate between how vision professionals may work with classroom teachers to fully support their students.
  • Identify how vision can impact areas outside of the core curriculum, including self-determination, compensatory, sensory, and social emotional learning.
Estimated Time to Complete: 1 hour


  • Shannon D. Cuniak, M.Ed., is a Teacher of the Visually Impaired (TVI) and a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS) in Canonsburg, PA. Formerly an Outreach Specialist at the Ohio State School for the Blind (OSSB), Cuniak currently works at The Intermediate Unit 1 in Washington County, PA as a TVI/COMS in multiple districts. Cuniak is an adjunct faculty instructor with both The Ohio State University and the University of Pittsburgh’s programs in visual impairments teaching courses in the area of braille and O&M. She has presented in a variety of settings on topics including Functional Vision Assessments, Blindness 101 and multiple teacher in-services. She received the Citation of Excellence for Direct Service Award in Orientation and Mobility from the Association for the Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired (AER).

Various organizations have approved modules and webinars in the Learning Hub for continuing education credit.


Table of Contents

Locked Pre-Assessment Locked Introduction Locked Identification and Referral - Part 1 Locked Identification and Referral - Part 2 Locked Identification and Referral - Part 3 Locked Post-Assessment Locked Survey