Perceptual Training Yields Rapid Improvements in Visually Impaired Youth
Visual access to environmental information requires coordinated visual processes over a wide field of view, in both central and peripheral regions. Individuals with impaired vision, however, seem to under-utilize their peripheral fields, even when their specific etiology does not indicate involvement of the peripheral retina. This suggests that their visual systems are not effectively processing available visual information. Recent studies have shown that typically-sighted adults can enhance visual processing across a wide field of view after playing action video games. Low vision individuals may particularly enhance their peripheral processing after similar training. The current study further explores the generality of such perceptual training by training a special population of low vision children either with an action video game or a simplified, psychophysical training task. Both training tasks enhanced low vision performance on a range of visual tasks. Low vision participants did exhibit graded improvement from center to periphery, with larger enhancements in the far periphery.