Visual perception is the ability to see and interpret (analyze and give meaning to) the visual information that surrounds us.
The process of "taking in" one's environment is referred to as perception. If perception is inaccurate, incorrect or altered in any way - problems with reading, spelling, handwriting, math and comprehension occur. Visual perceptual skills involve the ability to organize and interpret the information that is seen and give it meaning. The importance of visual perceptual skills in academic success is agreed upon by many, acknowledging reading would not be possible without adequate visual perception.
Visual perceptual processing impacts the ability to learn.
Without accurate visual perceptual processing, a student would have difficulty learning to read, give or follow directions, copy from the whiteboard, visualize objects or past experiences, have good eye-hand coordination, integrate visual information with other senses to do things like ride a bike, play catch, shoot baskets when playing basketball, or hear a sound and visualize where it is coming from (like the siren on a police car).
Visual perceptual skills include several key component areas:
- Visual Discrimination: The ability to notice detail differences such as shape, size, color, or other dimensional aspects.
- Form Constancy (Form Discrimination): The ability to perceive positional aspect differences and recognize objects when they are in a different orientation or format.
- Figure Ground (Foreground-Background Differentiation): The ability to focus on a selected target and screen out or ignore irrelevant images.
- Spatial Relations: The ability to recognize the positioning of objects in space.
- Visual Closure: The ability to recognize an object, letter or number without seeing all of the object.
- Visual Sequencing: The ability to see objects in a particular sequential order.
- Visual Memory: The ability to remember forms (letters) and sequences of forms (words) and recognize them quickly when seen again.
When visual information is perceived or processed incorrectly, it cannot be matched or integrated with our other senses. Instead of reinforcing learning experiences, it distracts and interferes. If what is seen cannot be "trusted", it hinders the ability to learn. Poor visual perceptual processing is not something a student "outgrows". If undiagnosed or left untreated, the student with poor visual perceptual processing will continue to fall behind in class even though it may appear they are working harder than other students in the same class.
Perceptual skills can be tested and deficits treated.
During the assessment with one of our Developmental Optometrists, if deficiencies or poorly developed skills are found, a treatment plan can be prescripted by our Developmental Optometrists. Treatment can include vision therapy, Interactive Metronome therapy, or a combination of both. Diagnosing and treating visual perceptual skill deficits since 1991. Call us today to schedule an appointment. 208.377.1310.