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Nicola McDowell

Doctor of Philosophy, (Education)
Study Completed: 2020
College of Humanities & Social Sciences


Thesis Title
The CVI PracticeFramework: An Effective Approach for Supporting Children with Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI)

Cerebral visual impairment (CVI) is the most common cause of visual impairment affecting children in the developed world. To help meet the needs of children with CVI, Ms McDowell proposed a practice framework that can be used within an education or rehabilitation context. Ms McDowell’s framework was based on her experience of developing a successful rehabilitation programme to improve her own visual and overall functioning, following a late CVI diagnosis. Ms McDowell identified three main components that led to her improvements in this previous programme. These were: developing an individual CVI profile, creating an individualised programme, and empowerment through increasing knowledge. Her research on each component of the framework, and on the framework as a whole, showed that it may be an effective approach for supporting children with CVI.

Associate Professor Alison Kearney
Dr Julia Budd