Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Check out the AT Network’s archived trainings

Have you wanted to attend the AT Network’s webinar trainings but haven’t had the time? Fortunately, it is not too late to learn about the latest in assistive technology.
The AT Network currently has over 30 archived trainings available to view. Each webinar is approximately 60-90 minutes. Follow any of the links below to watch archived trainings from the comfort of your computer. Make sure that your computer speakers are turned up so you can enjoy the full webinar experience. Once you have chosen an interesting topic, grab a snack, then sit back, relax and enjoy the show!

AT Network Archived Training Topics:

  • AT & Transition: What Happens After High School? Click here to view.
  • An Overview of iDevices and Apps. Click here to view.
  • Your Rights to AT in the Workplace. Click here to view.
  • AT for Attention and Deficit Disorder. Click here to view.
  • AT and Medicare. Click here to view.
  • Overview of AT Assessment Tools. Click here to view.
  • Reaching Today’s Struggling Readers with Accessible Digital Books. Click here to view.
  • AT Consideration for School-aged Children. Click here to view.
To view a full list of the AT Network’s archived trainings, click here.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

September is National Preparedness Month

September is National Preparedness Month

In his proclamation designating September as National Preparedness Month, President Barack Obama stated, “In April of this year, a devastating series of tornadoes challenged our resilience and tested our resolve. In the weeks that followed, people from all walks of life throughout the Midwest and the South joined together to help affected towns recover and rebuild…Disability community leaders worked side-by-side with emergency managers to ensure that survivors with disabilities were fully included in relief and recovery efforts. These stories…underscore that in America, no problem is too hard and no challenge is too great.”’s Emergency Preparedness section has many tools and resources that can help people with disabilities and others prepare for, and recover from, emergency situations and disasters.

Here are a few examples of the resources you’ll find on
• Tips for people who have pets or service animals
• Information about emergency kits and supplies
• Preparing for emergencies at work and school
• Accessible shelters and emergency housing
• Help recovering from a disaster 

Disability.Blog also has information about the importance of including everyone in emergency management planning, preparing for emergencies in the workplace and taking into account service animals when planning for emergencies.

Reprinted from the Disability Blog

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

10 Things Every School District Should Know About AT

School is back in session, which means that assistive technology and individualized education plans (IEPs) are on the minds of many students and teachers. 

The Georgia Project for Assistive Technology (a program of the Georgia Dept. of Education) created a four-part video series framing essential concepts and action steps for the responsible provision of AT services. Useful to school systems in any state (as well as parents, educators, therapists, and others), whether you have an AT program in place or are in the process of developing a program, here are 10 Things Every School District Should Know About Assistive Technology

Thank you to the AT Program News for sharing this resource.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Beyond the Apps Store!

Fingers on a keyboard.
10 Web pages with apps for special education and adults with disabilities

Thank you to the AT Program News for sharing the resources below.

As the volume of apps for mobile devices explodes, websites are cropping up to help us learn, review, and share about them. Below is a selection to help you get started:

1. Apps for Children with Disabilities (
Videos of apps in action to help parents, educators, caregivers and professionals make more informed purchases. The creator is a parent who has also launched an effort to give away 50 iPads in 50 states. 

2.; I Education Apps Review
Founded by an education technology specialist, this site has created a community of over 500 educators, administrators, and app developers, including 30 volunteer "educator" app reviewers.  Apps are categorized by grade level and tagged by subject. There is also a special education category with 10 reviews so far. A great place to explore (and help grow?)

3. Teach with your iPad
This is a Wiki with a special education page. There are a lot of educators out there creating Wikis to share education technology advice and this is one of them.

4. Mobile Learning for Children with Disabilities
Founded by a special educator, this Wiki includes 140 iPad/iPhone apps organized by category in addition to articles, video case studies and captioned video tutorials on devices.

5. Moms With Apps: Disability page
An online catalog of apps created by family-friendly developers.

6. iPodsibilities
"One teacher's thoughts on using iPods and iPads in the classroom."  Apps, reviews, lesson plans and more--including for special education.

Beyond Special Education...

7. iPhone/iPad Apps for AAC

8. iPhone/iPad Apps for Magnification and Vision Support

9. iPhone/iPad Apps for Literacy Support
These link to large spread sheets explaining, comparing, and reviewing apps! The AAC page sorts apps with symbols/pictures only, apps with symbols and text-to-speech, and text-based-only apps. The Vision page sorts apps by magnification and other vision support. The Literacy Support sheet is more of a listing only. They are provided by the Spectronics Web site--a supplier of inclusive learning technologies in Australia and New Zealand.

10. AAC TechConnect Apps Assistant
The Apps Assistant is under development to help sort through the sea of AAC apps through a series of basic questions. Check out the apps list and sign up for beta testing.

Happy searching!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A 5 minute request from people with speech disabilities

By Dr. Bob Segalman, President, Speech Communications Assistance by Telephone, Inc.

People with speech disabilities are asking others to help urge the FCC to update technology regulations to improve their telephone access. The FCC is considering whether Speech-to-Speech (STS) should be upgraded to include a video component, called Video Assisted Speech- to-Speech (VID-STS). The information provided by the video component makes them understandable even if their speech is too distorted to use traditional STS.    

Users of VID-STS would make calls using a broadband connection as well as a camera and microphone on their PC.  A trained VID-STS operator, who can help users be understood on the phone, would relay the call between the user and the called party.  During these calls, the VID-STS operator would watch the AAC device (voice output PC) and/or the face of the caller with a speech disability. This operator would observe any gesturing or facial expressions made by the person with a speech disability, and use this combination of information to relay the content of the phone call to the recipient of the call. 

Please let the FCC know that you support improved telephone access for people with speech disabilities. We need input from: potential users, family member/caretakers, disability advocates, allied medical professionals, government utility associates, and telephone industry associates. Many people with speech disabilities have other disabilities which prevent them being activists, so a few minutes of your time is needed to act on their behalf.  

A support statement is available at Go to the middle of the home page and click on the "Support Statement for VID-STS", and please complete your contact information. Your responses will go to the FCC.

For additional information, contact:
Bob Segalman, Ph.D., D.Sc. (Hon), President
Speech Communications Assistance by Telephone, Inc. (SCT)
515 P St., #403
Sacramento, CA 95814
Call 1-888-877-5302 and then ask for me at 916-448-5517