How to Pass the Meps Eye Test

Eye test

What is an eye test?

Eye tests can be used to check the eyesight. There are various ways of doing this. Which one is used depends on the goal of the test, i.e. what the test is supposed to determine. Usually opticians and ophthalmologists carry out the eye test.

Eye test for visual acuity

The term visual acuity refers to the ability of the retina to perceive two points as separate. “Visual acuity” is often used as a synonym for visual acuity, but strictly speaking it describes the visual acuity. This is the ability to see the shape (contours) or details of an object.

To check visual acuity, eye charts with characters of different sizes are often used. Most of these characters are Numbers or letters. Other symbols that are frequently used in the eye test are the E-hook and the Landolt ring.

  • The E-hook looks like an angular E and is shown in different positions on an eye chart: sometimes the E lies “on its back”, for example, and sometimes it is mirrored. The patient should report back to the doctor in which position the E-hook is.
  • The Landolt ring consists of a circle with a small opening. He, too, is always shown in different rotated positions on the eye chart. The patient must then indicate where on the ring the opening is located.

Eye test in children

You can test the eyesight of babies yourself, for example by switching a lamp on and off (the baby should move their eyes to the light) or moving a colored object about 50 to 80 cm away in front of the baby (the child should do the Following the object with your eyes).

For preschool children (from 2 years of age) who are not yet able to express themselves very well or cannot read numbers and letters, there is an alternative, for example, the LEA test. With this they should recognize highly simplified symbols to which they point on a sheet of paper available to them, or for which they can choose a name. The circle can be a ball as well as a sun, the symbol curved on both sides can be a butterfly, apple or heart.

Slightly older children can also take the eye test with the aforementioned E-hooks or Landolt rings, which represent more abstract forms. They are not easy to memorize and are harder to guess. In this way, the doctor can achieve an objective result in the children's eye test and discover a visual disorder.

In many eye tests, the eyes are checked individually by the patient always covering one eye with his hand. However, children often try to look at the eye charts with both eyes through their fingers. But then the healthy eye compensates for any one-sided visual impairment - this then goes undetected. Therefore, the doctor often asks the parents to cover the eye. It is even safer to cover one eye with an eye patch for the eye test.

Eye test for central facial deficits

A simple eye test that anyone can do at home is the Amsler grid test. It provides early evidence of retinal diseases that are associated with facial field failures.

The Amsler grid consists of a grid with a black point in the middle, which the patient should fix with only one open eye. Then he has to answer various questions from the doctor, for example whether the point in the center of the grid appears out of focus.

You can read exactly how the test with the Amsler grid works and when it is used in the article Amsler grid.

Eye test for color recognition

Although most eye tests primarily check visual acuity, there are also some that test the eyes' color perception. For example, the ophthalmologist can identify red-green weakness. The examination methods for color vision differ in structure from the examination of visual acuity. In Germany, the so-called Ishihara color table is usually used, a simple and inexpensive method.

How the Ishihara color table works, what other test procedures are available for checking color perception and how these work can be read in the article Color vision test.

Eye test to determine refraction

In order to see clearly, the eye has to refract light in such a way that it is focused on the retina. This ability is called refraction and depends on the relationship between the refractive power and the axial length of the eye. If this mechanism no longer works properly, the light refracts in front of the retina (nearsightedness) or only behind it (farsightedness).

In order to determine the refraction or a possible refraction error (ametropia), adults are usually simply put on different glasses. You then have to specify which glasses you can use best.

For infants, small children and people who cannot express themselves due to language problems, dementia or other illnesses, the doctor uses the so-called skiascopy (shadow test) (for more on this see below: "What do you do with an eye test?").

Stereoscopic eye test

The ability of the eyes to gain a spatial visual impression is called stereo vision. Various methods are available for testing this ability. The Long stereo test I and II. These each consist of a test card on which many black, randomly distributed points show three-dimensional images (such as cat, star, car). The person concerned can only recognize this with intact stereoscopic vision. The only difference between the stereo test I and II is that the images on the latter are a bit finer. The test is also suitable for children, or was originally developed for them.

New: the 3D eye test

Another eye test method has been available since 2014: The 3D eye test is intended to determine eyesight comfortably and precisely. Instead of looking at letter boards through 3D glasses, the test person looks at a monitor on which three-dimensional figures or landscapes appear.

This test should be advantageous, for example, for people who need varifocals, because this method can be used to better determine the required visual acuity in various simulated situations in the test.