Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

Backlighting AAC for Students with CVI

Side by side examples of no backlighting and backlighting

Light is important for students with CVI, but not in the way we provide provide light to students with ocular impairments. 

For students with ocular impairment, we provide task lighting on the object. 

For students with CVI it is the backlighting method that must be considered.


Using Backlighting to Facilitate Visual Attention

Backlighting helps students with CVI locate and maintain visual attention to their devices. You can see in the first system below on a non-backlighted device, the details are muted and discrimination requires extra time.

AAC with no backlighting

In this second system shown below, the pictures are the same but the system is changed to a backlighted surface of the iPad. Overall backlighting helps students find and use the icons/photographs. The targets are more distinct and separated from each other, optimal for visual access.

AAC with backlighting


Collage of backlighting AAC for students with CVI

This article is reprinted with permission from the author.