Title Psychophysical Testing in Disorders of the Visual System
Type Stage One
Code HPS233
Requirement Compulsory

Module objective

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST, in respect to ophthalmic and visual pathway disorders, will be able to develop, analyse, synthesise, evaluate and apply knowledge in order to assess psychophysical measurements, form differential diagnosis and be aware when to expedite medical support for patients in light of results. They will also be able to formulate an appropriate plan for investigation and management in conjunction with medical colleagues and should consistently demonstrate the attitudes and behaviours necessary for the role of a Consultant Clinical Scientist.

Knowledge and understanding

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will analyse, synthesise, critically evaluate and apply their expert knowledge with respect to:

  • recognising normal and abnormal psychophysical results, such as acuity measurement, contrast sensitivity and colour vision testing, and the confounders to reliable psychophysical measurement, such as age or reaction time;
  • distinguishing normal and abnormal visual perceptions, e.g. distortion and Charles Bonnet experiences of low vision;
  • differentiating the physiological substrates measured by specific tests and understanding circumstances for appropriate application;
  • the differences between limits and threshold techniques of various psychophysical measures of the same attribute;
  • advising on the differential diagnosis of causes abnormal psychophysical measures;
  • appropriate disease pathophysiology.

Technical and clinical skills

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be expected to critically reflect and apply in practice a range of clinical and communication skills and will be able to:

  • interpret psychophysical measurement, e.g. visual acuity, contrast sensitivity;
  • take a thorough, relevant and focused history;
  • advise on appropriate further investigations using specified protocols;
  • advise and communicate effectively with patients, relevant clinicians, patients and the public, and other healthcare professionals;
  • explain the possible causes to the patient and relatives where appropriate and outline the investigation and management plan within the scope of practice for a Consultant Clinical Scientist and collaboration with medical colleagues.

Attitudes and behaviours

This module has no attitude and behaviours information.


Code Title Action
HPS2-2-1-20 Ophthalmic & Vision Sciences (Electrophysiology) [v1] View
HPS2-2-2-20 Ophthalmic & Vision Sciences (Imaging) [v1] View
HPS2-2-3-20 Ophthalmic & Vision Sciences (Visual Perception and Psychophysics) [v1] View