Date of Award

Spring 5-2016

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis


Interdisciplinary Studies

First Advisor

Cathy Hughes

Advisor Department



One in 20 children is at risk for permanent vision loss from disorders such as amblyopia and strabismus (Why Save Sight, 2016). Despite vision disorders and childhood blindness being a common disability in children, preventative vision screenings are not at the center of prevention discussions. Studies have suggested that vision screenings for young children are beneficial in preventing permanent vision loss (Vision Screenings for Healthy Vision, 2016). Vision screenings for preschool children are important and require more attention in the United States. This descriptive study addressed parental perceptions of early detection of vision problems among preschoolers in southeast Mississippi as well as what barriers prevent children from receiving preventative vision screenings. “Parents” for this study included mothers, fathers, grandparents, foster parents, and legal guardians. Parents at two different optometry clinics completed a ten-question survey to determine their opinions on this issue. Parents from both locations (85.7%; N=49) reported that young children ages 3 to 5 should have a vision screening before starting preschool. The most frequent reported barrier (16.3%) of children not having regular screenings was noted as the child passing their school screening. Overall, these findings explored the parental perceptions of the need for young children between the ages of 3 and 5 to have screenings completed before entering preschool.