Orientation and Mobility Curriculum

Western Michigan University students preparing to become orientation and mobility specialists enroll in courses totaling 37 credit hours. This includes a practicum and an internship that provide professional field experience with mentors. Full-time students who attend on campus may complete the program in one calendar year (fall, spring, summer I and summer II). We also offer a distance education program for people who already have significant experience in the field of blindness and low vision. Upon application to the program, the admissions committee decides on the suitability of the distance education option for the prospective student.

Students graduating from the program earn a Master of Arts degree and meet all of the requirements for certification by the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals in orientation and mobility. The program includes preparation for the successful completion of the national certification examination. This exam is necessary for certification and will be taken via Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation and Education Professionals.

The following lists the courses for the orientation and mobility for adults program. Check the course catalog for course descriptions.


  • BLS 5770: Services for Persons with Disabilities (one credit)
  • BLS 5880: Psycho-Social Aspects of Disability (two credits)
  • BLS 5890: Medical and Functional Aspects of Disability (two credits)
  • BLS 5900: Physiology and Function of the Eye (two credits)
  • BLS 5920: Orientation and Mobility for Children (two credits)
  • BLS 5950: Introduction to Methods of Orientation and Mobility (four credits)
  • BLS 5960: Electronic Devices (four credits)
  • BLS 5970: Principles of Low Vision (two credits)
  • BLS 6010: Small 'N' Research: Design and Analysis (three credits)
  • BLS 6020: Gerontology - Orientation and Mobility and Vision Rehabilitation Therapy (two credits)
  • BLS 6040: Issues in Independent Travel (two credits)
  • BLS 6050: Practice in Low Vision (one credits)
  • BLS 6100 or 7100: Assisted or Independent Research (two credits)
  • BLS 6940: Principles of Orientation and Mobility (three credits)
  • BLS 6950: Practicum in Orientation and Mobility (two credits)
  • BLS 7120: Professional Field Experience (Internship) (six credits)

Total: 37 credits