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4th Workshop
Training of Teachers of the Visually Impaired in Europe

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Group 3: How to prepare teachers to work in different educational environments. The individual educational plan as a tool for including a MIVI student in a regular setting.

Content of this report:

Workshop participants

Emmy Csocsán (D)
Solveig Sjöstedt (Fi/Ko)
Vladimir Radulov (BUL)
Elena Gaston Lopez (E)
Griselda Tubau Molina (E)
Zsuzsa Angyalossy (H)
Malgorzata Paplinska (Pl)
Ingrid Zolgar Jerkovic (SL)
Marianna Buultjens (UK)
Monika Toth (H)

24th September, Session 1

8 countries with 10 representatives attended this workshop. At the 1st session we went through all the aims which had been sent out before the conference started. These aims are the following:

  1. To compare the structure and organisation of the training of teachers in MIVI in different countries in Europe. Analysis of the features of development
  2. Overview of theory, practice of the training and of current literature about MIVI
  3. Developing effective methods to work out IEP (individual education plan) for children with MIVI
  4. Co-operation of experts in the fields of research, developing learning materials, further education

The discussion started by introducing different systems, TT programs on VI or/and MIVI in these countries. Each of the participants introduced their situations according to the following aspects:

  1. Giving a short description of the structure and organisation of the training courses for teachers and other specialists in MIVI in your country (number of subjects, terms/semesters, BA, MA, credits etc… pre -and postgraduate courses)
  2. The relationships between theory and practice of the training in MIVI
  3. Sort and quality of co-operation between teacher training institutions and schools of MIVI learners
  4. Access to further education and enlarged know how and knowledge of colleagues working in the practice


As to professional training, we have to distinguish between what ONCE organises and who ONCE co-operates with.

1. ONCE training plans
2. Professional training at the University

Speech therapist: at Roman Llull University of Barcelona speech therapists have 6 credits in " language and blindness"

3. ONCE co-operation with external training programs

Priorities at the present are:

Poland/ Academy in Warsaw

There are two majors of studies at the Academy of Special Education: Education and Special Education. Within Special Education there are five year studies and extramural studies. There are the following MA specialities:

There is no separate speciality for teachers of MIVI. There are only subjects on different disabilities for example in the Education of the Blind and VI special course there are 3 subjects on MIVI (out of the total 20 subjects). These are the following:

There is no postgraduate program on MIVI, although there are subjects related to MIVI during postgraduate studies.

The education at the Academy is mostly based on theoretical knowledge. Every student gets information on medicine, psychology, theory and methodology of education. The students have 2 or 3 practical contacts with MIVI children during the studies. The teacher practice which everyone has to accomplish is not extensive and it does not have to include practice with MIVI children.

There are 2 institutions in Warsaw, Centre of Diagnostics and Rehabilitation and Centre for Teenagers and Adults with MIVI. The co-operation with these centers based on:

The system/structure of the university courses is being revised due to the Bologna Declaration.

UK, Scotland / University of Edinburgh

Hungary /ELTE Budapest, Special faculty of VI

In the faculty of VI the field specific training starts during the 3rd semester. The end of the 4th semester the students can choose again whether to continue their studies on teacher or therapist level. The specific training starts during the 5th semester.

Both teachers and therapists have to take the subject called " Introduction to MIVI" which is included in the following additional subjects. The students have to take 2-3 of them / 45 hours.

Since 1995 there is an opportunity to carry out the teacher practice in this field involving special departments of the special schools in Budapest.

Bulgaria / University of Sofia


Germany / University of Dortmund

The new Teacher Training Course (2003) in Special Education lasts 9 semesters

The structure of the course:

  1. General training in educational sciences
  2. Training in two fields of sciences related to school subjects (mathematics, German language etc.)
  3. Training in two fields (specialisation) of special education
    1. Obligatory field: Rehabilitation and education of persons with learning difficulties
    2. Chosen field (one of the chosen fields is Education and Rehabilitation of persons with VI).

There is no obligatory Module in education of children with MIVI but the students have the possibility to choose subjects dealing with MIVI during every semester. The offered topics are:

The main goal is to analyse the child and her/his environment.

Some of the students are working in projects in schools led by the colleagues from the university.

The methods are: analysing of literature, films and case studies.

The ISaR web-based project of the university plans to enhance its support concerning all persons involved in the education of persons with MIVI.

During the second phase of the teacher training (after the first state examination) in Germany the students are working in schools. Many of them work in schools for children with MIVI. The local teacher training seminars in the various states of the Federal Republic are responsible for the professional guidance. There are many institutions - schools for children and young people with VI - having further educational programs for teachers and professionals working in field of education of MIVI.




24th September, Session 2

The inclusion of children and young persons with MIVI is one of the real challenges all over Europe. There are countries where these children are not even enrolled in the school system whereas other countries have a high percentage of children and young persons with MIVI included in the general school system.

The (in many countries) new challenge for the TT at the universities in Europe is thus to provide the university students with a diversified knowledge and skills not only to support the MIVI learner but also to support the staff around the learner wherever they are placed. The students may later work as special school / resource centre teachers, as itinerant teachers, in educational administration or as highly specialised experts at universities.

The "staff" working with the MIVI learner may be parents caring for their child at home, or, in some institutions, non-skilled carers, or specialists in impairments other than the combination MIVI, and classroom teachers. It is thus vitally important to harmonise the knowledge and skills that are needed for the teachers to give appropriate service to the pupils as well as to those in close educational contact with them. The Bologna Declaration makes it important to do this on a European level and bring "young and old" inclusion countries closer with regard to the education of children and young persons with MIVI.

Our group has prepared a core curriculum analysis (see below) on MIVI. In order to structure the work, a matrix on "General core curriculum / blind" was used. It was created on the initiative of Markku Leskinen, PhD, from the Finnish Support to the Development of Special Education Sector in Kosovo II and carried out by Solveig Sjöstedt under the supervision of Emmy Csocsán.

25th September, Session 3 and Session 4


The representatives had been asked to collect a list of literature on MIVI used at their universities.

The lists could be downloaded as text documents (rtf format) in national languages:


The last point on the agenda was the discussion on what kind of co-operation the representatives desire for their work in the future.

The list was as follows:

Core curriculum - general/blind

The first table is a revised core curriculum which was the basis for the work.

The core curriculum / training program for professionals working with MIVI and/or working in any fields related with MIVI. This is just an outline without any details. The general and most essential aspects of the curriculum with regard to MIVI were included. It needs, however, to be more detailed, more structured, more precise.

Core curriculum - general/blind
Basic knowledge (Regular teacher) Advanced knowledge (Special school teacher) In-depth knowledge (Itinerant teacher) Specialisation (Specialist)
I Background context - Prerequisite Teacher training;
The system of education
The history of the education of the visually impaired;
Development of the education of the visually impaired and the system of inclusion
The role of the legislation, society, NGOs etc in changing the educational system towards inclusion. The social and health legislation as an instrument for segregation - inclusion;
Research methodology;
Educational policy
II Content Knowledge and experience in how the child with VI uses his/her senses, the impact of the visual impairment on the motor development and the cognitive learning strategies;
Awareness of the communication between sighted and visually impaired learners: Facial expressions, gestures, verbalisms, during dialogues and participation in group discussions etc.;
To learn methods to facilitate the child's communication process in co-operation with experts;
Knowledge about the elements of social inclusion:
- behaviour of the visually impaired student;
- behaviour of the classmates;
- behaviour of students, teachers and staff;
- attitudes of the parents;
- social cooperation in class
Knowledge in Visual impairment
- Visual abilities;
- Light and colour perception;
- Visual field etc.;
And its impact on the visually impaired learner;
Awareness of learning conditions and individual needs;
Assist teachers and professionals and make recommendations regarding the vision of the individual child in the classroom in the following fields:
- Perception;
- Communication;
- Cognitive development;
- Motor development;
- Social inclusion
Carrying out and using theories and classifications of visual function:
- Visual abilities;
- Individuality;
Awareness and knowledge of educational implications of the environment and environmental clues for VI learners;
Deliver methods to in ensure cooperation between teachers, students, parents and school staff in assessing the social situation in the class / school / home environment.
Take part in, conduct and design intra- and trans-disciplinary research and carry out projects on special topics:
- Learning processes;
- Perception;
- Communication;
- Cognitive development;
- Sensory developmental integration;
- Rehabilitation;
Provide teachers on all levels with instructions on how to handle the issue;
Through research / projects on social inclusion produce instructions on social behaviour management regarding inclusion of visually impaired children and young people;
Preparing and carrying out plans and seminars
III Methods Video analysis;
Case studies;
Work under supervision
Classroom management;
Practice in co-operation with different experts
Communication training;
Curriculum management
Working in research projects
IV Teacher profile Communication skills;
Individual approach
Counselling Management skills Competence in research and development

A. Basic knowledge / teachers in mainstream education

I. Background context
II. Content


  1. Cognitive development
    - perception
  2. Emotional development
    - communication
    - evolution of parental partnership
  3. Motor development
  4. Social inclusion
  5. Independent Living Skills / ADL
III. Methods
IV. Teacher profile

B. Advanced knowledge / special teachers in the special schools

I. Background Context
II. Content
III. Methods
IV. Teacher profile

C. In-Depth knowledge / resource teachers

I. Background context
II. Context
III. Methods
IV. Teacher profile

Something more to add to the 4th level :

D. Specialization / Specialists or university teachers

I. Background context
II. Context
III. Methods
IV. Teacher profile

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