Ep. 150: Vision-Related Learning Difficulties with Dr. Juanita Collier, MS, OD, FCOVD

Sep 12, 2023 | 0 comments

In her book, The Hidden Link Between Vision and Learning, Wendy Beth Rosen cited a study by Ohio State University. That research study found that 69% of students with IEPs identified as having treatable vision problems, yet would pass a typical school screening. Most people only associate vision with eyesight, but today’s guest explains that there is so much more to the visual system and even a child with great eyesight could be struggling with vision-related learning difficulties.

Today’s guest is Dr. Juanita Collier and she is here to discuss these vision related learning difficulties. A parent actually recommended this interview after her experience finding the help her child needed. I am so glad they reached out. This interview is so informative for all parents and Dr. Collier provides us with some great tips and guidelines to help the development of a child’s visual system.


Show Notes:

[2:57] – 10% of children have a vision-related problem that interferes with learning.

[3:22] – Vision is how you are taking in anything through your visual system. It is more than eyesight.

[4:33] – Most screenings test distance vision, but near vision isn’t frequently checked in children.

[5:46] – Kids don’t know how to explain that their vision is poor, especially if that is how it has always been for them.

[8:43] – Dr. Collier describes the different parts of a vision test and how she is able to determine if the challenges a child is having are due to their vision.

[11:56] – In addition to eyesight, visual processing needs to be evaluated.

[13:50] – Dr. Collier explains what visual therapy entails and how it can positively impact students with vision-related learning difficulties.

[16:03] – For children who didn’t crawl, parts of their vision hasn’t been fully developed.

[18:23] – Currently, we are teaching children to read before their visual system is ready.

[21:03] – Excessive screen time can create some problems.

[23:19] – We are losing the need for a lot of skills that used to develop naturally because of excessive screen use.

[25:05] – Eye strain is a concern. Adults will take a break when they have eye strain from screen time, but children don’t have that regulation.

[26:09] – What is the 20-20-20 Rule?

[28:23] – Dr. Collier shares information on concussions in children due to sports.


About Our Guest:

Dr. Collier is a leading Behavioral Optometrist and the founder of 4D Vision Gym. She specializes in post-concussion care, vision-related learning difficulties, visual rehabilitation and visual development for patients of all ages.  She is one of only a few Optometrists in Connecticut to have earned Fellowship status by the International Examination & Certification Board (IECB) of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development. Dr. Collier has lectured extensively to physicians, therapists, school faculty, healthcare professionals and students on the importance of visual functioning, and advocates to make vision rehabilitation accessible to individuals of all ages and abilities. 


Connect with Dr. Collier:

Links and Related Resources:

Connect with Us:


The Diverse Thinking Different Learning podcast is intended for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical or legal advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Additionally, the views and opinions expressed by the host and guests are not considered treatment and do not necessarily reflect those of ChildNEXUS, Inc or the host, Dr. Karen Wilson.