Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI) is a visual condition caused by problems that stem from the brain, instead of the eye. Many children with CVI struggle to make sense of what they see, and to understand how their vision works.

Digital technology can help scientists study children with CVI, and it can also empower the children themselves. Understanding their own condition increases children’s confidence and ability to communicate their needs.

Create a fun, serious game
We worked closely with Nicola to adapt her playing card assessment into a serious game for iPad. An app could help her gather better data, and identify small, but crucial, variations in behaviour. An app would also help share the game widely, for scientists around the world to use. Most importantly, a game designed for children would help them learn how their vision works.

Empowering children to understand their condition

We tested the app with kids with CVI. When the levels got harder and more cards appeared on the screen, their eyes widened. They seemed daunted by the extra visual clutter. But then their eyes began darting around the screen, determined to take in all the cards so they could conquer that level.

The aim for the app in future research is to help children develop a variety of methods to deal with visual clutter. After playing, discussing the game with the kids provided a way for them to talk about how their vision works. They were able to get a better understanding of their own condition. 
A web app to help researchers
We built a web app dashboard for researchers to access the information collected during the game. We created a note-taking space as part of it, so researchers can record any additional information they notice when watching the children play.