Course detail: Tactical Vision

Course Description: 

It's not their fault, but most cops are blind. 

And because they are blind, their investigative skills, driving skills, and survival skills are all compromised. They may miss evidence at crime scenes, even though it may be in plain sight. They have traffic accidents, often hitting objects and other vehicles they simply didn't see. They are involved in controversial uses of force, based on observations made under mental conditions which will further impair their ability to see. Unfortunately, most cops don't realize they are afflicted and therefore won't do anything to correct their condition. Administrators, investigators, prosecutors, the media, and the public all buy into the myth that police officers are trained observers when nothing could be further from the truth. The condition, known as Perceptual Blindness, has been studied extensively in scientific circles for nearly a century and is only now finding practical applications in fields like police work. For a profession in which observation skill plays such a critical role, understanding this is extremely important. Perceptual Blindness affects everyone to varying degrees. It is a breakdown in the complex visual recognition cycle, and can manifest itself in several ways: 
  • Inattentional Blindness: The scientific definition is the inability to detect unexpected changes or movements to which we aren't paying attention. Because vision requires attention, being distracted can cause you to miss what your eyes are sending to your brain. One can literally look at something and fail to see it. 
  • Change Blindness: The failure to notice large changes across different views of a scene, especially if it occurs during an extraneous disruption of visual continuity, such as a rapid eye movement, a flicker, a blink, or distraction. 
  • Cognitive Blindness: Vision is closely tied to recognition and memory. In observation, many times the brain will take shortcuts, accessing a limited amount of actual visual input, and then relying on memory to fill in the blanks. As a result, people often see only what they expect to see, even if it isn't really there, or what they are specifically looking for, and ignore otherwise obvious things. 

Combined, these various elements of Perceptual Blindness affect police officers in every aspect of their daily duties, regardless of the assignment. The visual evidence shown in this class is compelling and frightening. Words can't do justice to the scope of the problem. This powerful presentation literally must be seen to be believed. 

Core Competency:

  • Participants will be able to decide upon prescribed courses of action or techniques that will provide a greater safety level in various environments, events, and situations. 

Course Objectives:
  • Make officers aware of the scope of the problem of Perceptual Blindness, and how it affects their performance and safety. 
  • Teach officers the mechanics of vision. 
  • Introduce officers to the various components of Perceptual Blindness. 
  • Teach officers how to recognize the limitations of their vision and give them the training tools to overcome the problem. 
  • Teach officers how to integrate their new visual skills into daily activities like investigations, handling service calls and driving, both routine and pursuit. 
  • Teach officers how to integrate their new visual skills into their critical decision making regarding deadly force.
Instructional Method:
  • Instructor led lecture and discussion
Who Should Attend:
  • Law Enforcement Officers
Course Requirement:
  • 100% attendance and participation
Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend University of Kansas sponsored events. If you require a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in an event, please email KLETC or call 620.694.1400 at least three weeks before the first day of the event. Some events may require notice earlier than three weeks and require you contact a specific individual; if so, that information is provided in the event-specific information.

 Session Information: LE23265F (5 seats (21%) remaining)

Schedule: Every day, starting on 03/28/23 and ending on 03/28/23
Only 6 days left to register!
Times: 08:00am-05:00pm CDT


Please dress in layers, as the temperature in the room may be difficult to adjust. The session begins at 8:00AM and is estimated to end at 5:00PM. Onsite registration will be available at 7:30 AM. Participants are responsible for their own travel, meals and lodging. We look forward to seeing you in Dodge City.


Name Additional Resources
Derrick Bartlett

Facility Detail

Dodge City KLETC Regional Site
236 San Jose Dr.
Rm 17
Dodge City, KS 67801

Cancellation Policy

A refund less a $25.00 cancellation fee will be assessed for all cancellations made in writing prior to 10 days before the start of the event. After that time, no refunds will be made.