Orientation and Mobility Evaluation Checklist
Community Based Education

Students are admitted to the Millet Learning Center's community based education program if they have a navigational disability, or if, in the judgment of the orientation and mobility specialist, a student lacks the practice (experience, competency) to be consistently safe and successful while navigating environmental spaces. Blind children and severely visually impaired children automatically fit the criteria for service, provided they have sufficient cognitive skills to be independent in the community.

This checklist was created as an informal instrument to evaluate children with few if any visual anomalies, but who (in the judgment of parents, teachers, and/or consultants) have problems navigating independently in space. The items below that address concepts and movement are most relevant, although secondary items (communication skills, personal items) listed below are also considered. Scoring is subjective and is based on observation and testing of the student at an indoor mall.

In most cases, we do not expect the student to do well on this evaluation. It is just a baseline procedure to justify admittance into the program and provides a general idea of weak areas. We cover and review (repeat every year) all the items below during the five year community travel program.

Body and postural concepts

Body planes

1. The student knows the body planes
2.The student knows left and right
3. The student knows the degrees of the circle and can orient at 45, 180, 360, and 90

Positional concepts

1. The student can position the body in relation to landmarks
2. The student can use a landmark to change the direction of travel
3. The student can say what messages landmarks contain (start/stop, turn left/right, you went too far, you are half way (etc.), you have arrived, align your body 45 degrees)
4. The student knows the meaning of positional concepts (next too, across from, in the middle of, between, beside, next to the last, third store on the right, etc.)
5. The student can use landmarks strung together to locate an object (can sequence forward)
6. The student can backward chain a string of landmarks (sequence backward)
7. The student knows the cardinal directions, when asked can travel N,S,E or W
8. The student can read a compass
9. The student can differentiate between body referenced systems and cardinal systems
10. The student can follow a directional sequence that uses positional concepts, left and right, landmarks, and cardinal directions
11. The student can read a map showing the layout of a mall, and can locate a store after consulting the map

Sensory and Motor skills/Environmental concepts

1. The student knows the senses used for orientation (smell, sound, touch, vision)
2. The student knows how to selectively attend to these senses
3. The student knows relaxation techniques that calm the body and allow sensory awareness
4. The student can look at or toward landmarks, and can make consistent eye contact
5. The student can describe (using shape, color, position, pattern, relative distance)
6. The student can describe environmental spaces (kitchen, bathroom, classroom, mall, grocery store, intersection, etc.) and knows the main functional purposes of these spaces
7. The student can locate typical landmarks in given environmental spaces (for example: locate the refrigerator in a kitchen)
8. The student has good wheelchair driving skills, and can navigate while driving
9. The student can use an escalator appropriately
10. The student can use an elevator appropriately
11. The student understands what it means when an environmental space is inaccessible
12. The student can move through crowded hallways without endangering themselves or others (or inconveniencing others)
13. The student moves at an appropriate speed; not too fast or slow

Travel on Public Transportation

1. The student knows about public bus service (STS) and has practiced using it
2. The student knows how to be safe on public transportation
3. The student can give directions to their own house from a vehicle

Outdoor competency

1. The student knows outdoor environmental concepts (block, intersection, types of neighborhoods, numbering systems, etc.)
2. The student can cross streets using an appropriate strategy for their physical circumstances (wheelchair user, cane user, telescope user, etc.)
3. The student has sufficient practice crossing streets to be trusted and safe

Communication skills

1. The student can ask for assistance in a polite manner without apprehension
2. The student can ask for directions in such a way that relevant information is attained (landmarks, initial direction of travel, side of the hall to walk on and look, approximate distance to travel to a relevant landmark, etc.)
3. The student can follow the directions given to them to successfully reach a destination
4. The student knows where to go for help
5. The student knows appropriate people to ask assistance of
6. The student can give directions to others using landmarks
7. The student can make eye contact consistently
8. The student can problem solve in a small group setting

Time concepts

1. The student can read a watch (analog, digital, or talking)
2. The student can use a watch to manage time issues (be away for a designated time)


1. The student is not afraid to be in public
2. The student is socially appropriate (is polite when asking for help, talks in a quiet voice in restaurants, etc.)
3. The student is appropriate with other students (interacts, is supportive, etc.)
4. The student can problem solve when lost and can reorient
5. The student can lead and follow appropriately
6. The student has appropriate ADL skills including:

A. Has good hygiene
B. Can dress themselves
C. Can feed themselves independently in public restaurants
D. Can use public bathrooms independently
E. Can use a telephone appropriately to set up transportation
F. Knows enough about wheelchair maintenance to keep their chair safe and in good working order; knows where to go for repairs