Provincial Outreach Program for Students with Deafblindness

Introduction to Deafblindness

Course Content

This course provides an introduction to the fascinating field of Deafblindness. The greatest challenge facing an individual with deafblindness lies in gathering sufficient information from the environment to fully understand what is happening around them. We will explore the impact that deafblindness can have on learning, communication and social skills, and discuss the best practices used in supporting a person who is deafblind. The participants in this course will be led through an exploration of the senses, in order to better understand how to most effectively support a person with deafblindness. The content of the course focuses on the needs of individuals whose Deafblindness is congenital or early adventitious in nature.  It is designed to be an overview that can be adapted and applied to specific situations.

The course will be presented using Moodle on the Richmond Virtual School. Details of how to access the course will be emailed to you when your registration is received. It is estimated you will need to commit 6 - 10 hours per week to complete the course. There will be readings and assignments to be completed each week.

Participants will receive a transcript from Richmond Continuing Education upon completion of the course


  • Participants must be currently supporting a student with deafblindness under an education authority in the Province of BC

Topics Addressed

  • The impact of deafblindness on living and learning
  • Best practices in supporting someone with deafblindness¬†
  • Exploring our distance and impact senses
  • Communication techniques for people with deafblindness
  • Calendar communication systems
  • Responsive Environment

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion, the student will be able to:

  • Describe the impact that congential deafblindness has on an individual's ability to learn and communicate effectively
  • Discuss deafblindness in terms of an "Information Gathering Disability"
  • Demonstrate the best practices and techniques used when working with someone who is deafblind
  • Describe the role our senses play in gathering information
  • Describe the impact of some common visual conditions on an individual's ability to gather visual information
  • Describe the impact of some common auditory conditions on an individual's ability to gather auditory information
  • Demonstrate communication techniques used with children, youth, and adults whose deafblindness is congenital in nature

Instructional Methods

This course has been developed into an 8 week online course utilizing online readings, web searches, and multimedia for course instruction. Students must participate in online discussion forums. Written assignments are to be submitted as Word documents. Participants will need access to a high speed Internet connection to view streamed documentaries in a QuickTime format.

Course Hours: 30