My student (child) has a 20/200 acuity, what does that mean?

The definition of legal blindness set by the Department of Health and Human Services reads like this:


“A person whose central acuity does not exceed 20/200 in the better eye with corrective lenses, or whose visual acuity is greater than 20/200 but is accompanied by a limitation in the field such that the widest diameter of the visual field subtends an angle no greater than 20 degrees.” — National Association for the Visually Handicapped

And what that means is this: The visual acuity of 20/200 is what a person with a visual impairment can see at 20 feet can typically be seen by a person with 20/20 vision at 200 feet. And the same goes for any acuity, for example, 20/100 is what a person with a visual impairment can see at 20 feet, a person with 20/20 vision is able to see at 100 feet.
Below you will see some images of what it looks like through the eyes of a person with a 20/200 visual acuity.

Images provided by:  BuzzFeed Images

So, a person who is legally blind may still be able to see and function very well independently. It is always best to keep in mind that visual acuity measurements do not determine a person’s level of function or their ability.

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