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When we assessed Brandon, we did it in several short sessions. Looking seemed to be hard for Brandon and we didn't want to tire him out too much. We assessed him on three different occasions: in his darkened classroom with no other students present, in a room with low light, and then back in the darkened classroom room using an APH light box. The darkened room helped reduce the complexity of the visual environment. Darkening the room might help in assessment of students who seem to be functioning in Phase 1. Teachers may use it as an adaptation if it is found to help significantly.

We recorded our thoughts on the data collection form called "Direct Assessment Information."

During the first dark room session, we often shined a light on objects if Brandon did not seem to notice them. Since he is interested in buttons and switches, you may notice that turning off and on the light switch can be very distracting to him. The light source itself was sometimes distracting when it was held so that Brandon could detect it within his visual field.

In clip 1, Brandon responds to a lighted red plate. He locates it rather quickly, then looks away, then when prompted touches it while looking at it. Let's watch the first clip of the direct assessments.

[video clip 1]

>>Brandon: Um-hum.

>>Teacher: Uh-huh. You can touch it if you want to. Um hum. Permission.

We gathered a wealth of information in that short clip, and we recorded it in the rows on the part of the data sheet in "Color," because it was red, "Visual Latency," because he looked fairly quickly, and "Complexity" because the room was quiet and with the lights being out, had little competing visual input. We also recorded information in "Distance," because the object was presented very near to Brandon, and in "Visually Guided Reach" because he reached toward the favored color item without looking away.

In clip 2, Brandon responds to a lighted blue item. He glances at it, then looks away before touching it, and then leans in very close to look at it again, which he sustains until construction vehicles outside distract him with a beeping sound.

[video clip 2]

>>Teacher: Um-hum. Pretty cool! Good job.

>>Brandon: Eep. Eep.

>>Teacher: Hum?

>>Brandon: Eep.

>>Teacher: Oh, you hear that beeping?

We marked the information from this clip in the row for "Color," since the blue, single color object draws his attention, but not as much as the red one. We also marked "Visual Latency" because his response is not immediate like with the red item, "Complexity" because the beeping noise caused him to look away, "Distance," because he positioned himself so close to the object, and "Visually Guided Reach," since he was unable to look and touch the unfamiliar blue item.

In clip 3, Brandon is leaning in to look at the shiny gold item and then stops looking. When the flashlight is clicked on, he directs his gaze to the sound source and looks for a long time at the light source. Then he is able to look away from the light source and look at the lighted, shiny gold item and reach for it simultaneously.

[video clip 3]

>>Brandon: Uh-oh out.

>>Teacher: [laughs]

We marked that on our data collection sheet in several places. We put it under "Need for Movement" because the item was shiny and drew Brandon's visual attention even before the light was shined on it. We put it under "Light," because Brandon looked at the light source for quite a while, "Distance," because Brandon positioned himself so close to the target, and "Visually Guided Reach" because he was able to reach without looking away.

Clip 4 involves a silver and blue shiny pinwheel with a light shined on it- Brandon is able to look at it. It is presented more centrally at first, before the video clip starts, then it's moved to the left. Brandon has trouble locating the new position with his hand. This may be due to increased complexity, with 2 colors in the pinwheel along with increased teacher noise.

[video clip 4]

>>Teacher: Wanna touch it one more time?

>>Brandon: Yeah.

>>Teacher: Oops, where'd it go? It moved.

>>Brandon: Sorry.

>>Teacher: No, it's quite allright. It moved. Uh-huh. Now see if you can touch it. Good! Very good!

We marked this in "Color," because the item has 2 colors, "Movement," because the item is shiny, "Complexity," because Brandon was unable to act on the object the same way as the shiny gold item and there was increased environmental noise and increased complexity of the target, "Distance Viewing" because he leaned in to look, and "Visually Guided Reach" because he was unable to look and touch at the same time.

In Clip 5, Brandon is shown a shiny aluminum pie pan, which basically acts as a light source. The shiny, reflective factor gives that supercharged movement effect. He is unable to reach for and look at the item at the same time, and he also may be tired: it's about 13 minutes into the session. Also, there is a low-level background whistling noise.

[video clip 5]

>>Teacher: Wanna see if you can touch that thing? Um-hum, that's my arm. Yeah, very good! Yeah? You got close. Try one more time. Um-hum you got my arm. You got so close. That's it. Tap it? [laughs]

So we marked this information in "Movement," "Visual Latency," "Complexity," "Light," and "Visually Guided Reach."

Clip 6 is the last in the first session. Brandon is being shown a black and white dog with a pink tongue, which is being wiggled on his left side and has light shining on it. He glances at it and then looks away and reaches for it. The toy is activated to make a sound and following that all visual behavior stops.

[video clip 6]

>>Teacher: Um-hum. Oh, you saw that.

>>Brandon: Hug.

>>Teacher: Um-hum. You can have some hugs and kisses in just a minute. [laughter] Ready? [activates toy]

>>Brandon: Sorry.

>>Teacher: You're doing great! [activates toy] Woah! [laughter] Scary dog. Wanna look at it with your eyes? Uh-hum, you touched it. Dog bite.

>>Brandon: [laughs]

We marked this one in "Visual Latency" because he visually detected the novel object, but did not fixate. It is also the end of the session and he may be fatigued. We also marked "Complexity," because auditory input stopped his looking behavior, and in "Visually Guided Reach" because he looks away while reaching before all the looking stops.

The next session involves a relatively non-complex visual environment (plain walls, no shelves, etc.) and low light. At the beginning of the session Brandon is distracted by the other students talking, but then they leave and the area is fairly quiet. Items are presented in front of an invisiboard.

Clip 7 shows Brandon's response to a flashlight with a red filter shined toward him in his upper peripheral left field, lower peripheral left field, and lower central field. He seems to respond to the second two. He is also tested on his right side but no response is observed, as expected, since Brandon has a detached retina on that side. He is paying a great deal of attention to background noise during this clip. In the very last part, he seems to look longer toward the red light source. Environmental noise has been greatly reduced by this time.

[video clip 7]

>>Teacher 1: He noticed that.

>>Teacher 2: Um-hum.

[Background noise:other students talking]

>>Teacher 1: Not that one so much. I'll try this side anyway. I know it''s not so good.

>>Brandon: Um-hum.

We recorded this information in "Color," "Field Preferences," and "Complexity."

In clip 8, Brandon is shown a pink moving item, and seems to notice and really look for a few seconds once a light is shined on it. The item is presented for about 90 seconds before Brandon looks at it, but only the end is shown in the clip.

[video clip 8]

>>Brandon: Ha ha ha.

>>Teacher: Hee hee hee.

>>Brandon: Hi. Hi!

>>Teacher: I'm going to count that as a notice.

We recorded the information from clip 8 in "Color," because pink does not seem to be preferred, though it is a single color and does draw a small amount of visual attention. We wrote our notes in "Visual Latency," because it takes him a long time to look, and in "Complexity" because the environment had to be extremely controlled in order for Brandon to see this item.

In clip 9, Brandon is again presented with the aluminum pie pan, which he seems to notice immediately, even before the light was shined on it: it is shiny and also produces movement. He also maintained visual attention, but this may have been because it looked like a light.

[video clip 9]

We recorded the information from this clip in "Need for Movement", in "Complexity" since the environment was well controlled, and in "Light."

Clip 10 is interesting because Brandon is being asked to look at vertically hanging gold beads. This may be the smallest visual target we asked him to look at. This is the last clip of the second testing session- we have been testing about 10 minutes. It takes him about 5 seconds to look at the shiny, moving gold beads. The beads also act as a sort of vertical stripe, which is the first evidence we see that may indicate a pattern preference of Brandon's.

[video clip 10]

We recorded this data in the rows for "Color," in that this is a vertical stripe and a pattern, in "Movement," and in "Visual Latency."

The next testing session was done in the dark familiar room with the light box. At times there are low levels of background noise. All of these clips should be considered when thinking about Brandon's response to light, though we don't necessarily identify each of them this way.

In clip 11, we see Brandon noticing the light box with the red filter, turning his head away, then turning his head back. He then lowers his eyelids and turns away as soon as he hears the door closing.

[video clip 11]

Brandon: Oh, sorry. Psssst.

We marked this on the data collection sheet in the rows for "Color" and "Complexity."

Clip 12 is interesting because the movement of the hypnodisc, for lack of a better term, on the red filter seems to draw Brandon's visual attention, but when the disc is still, he looks until it begins moving again. It's like movement draws his attention but then it has to stop in order for him to keep looking.

[video clip 12]

>>Brandon: Um-hum. [chuckles] Alright.

We marked these observations in the rows "Color" because the hypnodisc seemed to be a pattern that Brandon liked, and in "Need for Movement," because of the way the movement attracted Brandon's visual attention and then made him look away.

In Clip 13, a disc is presented with very small dots. Brandon does not seem to be responding to the small dots: he tries briefly to get a closer look, but this pattern does not seem very detectable to him.

[video clip 13]

>>Teacher: This one's not as interesting.

We marked this in "Color," since this pattern did not seem to be preferred.

Clip 14 illustrates that Brandon does indeed prefer red to green, as you see him looking much less at the green filter on the lightbox, with or without the hypnodisc.

[video clip 14]

>>Brandon: Hi.

We marked this observation in "Color" on the data sheet.

In Clip 15, We see Brandon looking for a sustained amount of time at the hypnodisc when it is still, but when it begins to move, he looks away.

[video Clip 15]

>>Brandon: Um-hum. Alright.

We marked this in "Color" because, again, he was attracted to this pattern, and in "Need for Movement," because he looked away when it began to move.

In clip 16, Brandon is presented with much larger dots made of white light. He examines these briefly. Brandon is then presented with a zig-zag pattern, first with no filter, and then with the red filter. Brandon seems to have little interest in this pattern.

[video clip 16]

Brandon: [inaudible] Eat? Aw, man!

We marked observations about these patterns in the row "Color."

In Clip 17, Brandon turns toward the lightbox in front of him with no filters or patterns on it. He squints and turns away from it.

[video clip 17]

>>Teacher: Wow, bright, huh?

We marked this observation on the data collection sheet in the row called "Light."

Clip 18 is interesting because this seems to be one of the most complex items that Brandon is asked to look at. It is a multi-colored vertically striped pattern. He seems to be interested, even with background noise, but can't look for very long. This pattern contains Brandon's favorite color, red, and his second favorite, blue.

[video clip 18]

[background conversation]

We marked this information in "Color" because of the large number of colors Brandon seems to be seeing even this late in the testing session, and because of the vertical stripe pattern, which seems to be something that is easier to look at. We also marked this in "Complexity" because of the complexity of the target and the environmental noise competing.

In Clip 19, the final clip of this testing session, Brandon is asked to look at a checkerboard pattern on various colors, and we'll see that he looks the longest when it is on the red, confirming that red is a nice anchor color for Brandon. He is also able to look with other filters, just not for as long.

[video clip 19]

>>Brandon: Hi. Um-hum.

>>Teacher: Green, huh? Allright. Swirly mat time. What do you think, Eric? What do you think we need?

We marked this information in "Color," because the checkerboard pattern always seemed to draw his attention, even after having been requested to look for so many turns, and because red remains the most attractive color for looking.