Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Communication Corner: Top 10 Ways to Learn More About Augmented Alternative Communication AAC Over the Summer


1)  Parents and professionals can check out AAC items from PACERs Simon Technology Center's lending library or your local assistive technolog lending program.  More information abotu PACER's lending library can be found online athttp://www.pacer.org/stc/library.
2)  If you ahve always wanted to explore AAC with your child but haven't yet, schedule a free consultation in the Simon Technology Center to explore the latest and greatest in the world of AAC.  More informaiton can be found online athttp://www.pacer.org/stc/consultations.
3)  If you have a piece of technology but are not sure how to use it schedule a fee based Individualized Training and work one-on-one with a specialist that can tailor the training to meet your needs.  More information can be found online athttp://www.pacer.org/stc/individualtrainings.asp.
4)  Attend an archived webinar on your time that focuses on AAC.  If you are new to the topic an Introduction to AAC webinar ca be found online at http://www.pacer.org/webinars/archive-info.asp?offset=10&webinar_id=38.
5)  Attend a live webinar on a specific topic related to AAC or on a specific language system.  You can generally find these webinars by going to a device company's websites such as:  Dynavox - http://www.dynavoxtech.com/training/online;  PRC - http://www.prentrom.com/training; or Tobii ATIhttp://www.tobii.com/en/assistive-technology/global/.
6)  Attend the online self-study AAC program provided through the AAC Institute.  this free online program teaches you various aspects of AAC.  The program currently contains 4 courses; each course is a prerequisite for the next course.  CEU credits are available.  More informaiton is available online athttp://www.aacinstitute.org/welcometoaacissp.html.
7)  Attend a live workshop on AAC.  Several are coming up at PACER, are free to attend, and are sponsored and led by local AAC vendors.  Learn more at http://www.pacer.org/workshops/bygrant.asp#stc.
8)  Budget for assistive technolog (AT and AAC Conferences that occur during the school year.  Conferences can be a great way to network, meet with technology vendors, and learn about best practices in the field.  A National AT Conference held in MInnesota is Closing the Gap CTG.  CTG takes place in October every year.  More information about Closing the Gap ca be found online at http://www.closingthegap.com/conference/faqs.lasso.
9)  Learn more about the online resources provided by the AAC Vendors such as PRC's AAC Language Lab http://www.aaclanguagelab.com/ and the Implementation Toolkit by Dynavoxhttp://www.dynavoxtech.com/implementation-toolkit/learning-paths/.
10) Remember the internet is your friend.  There are wonderful websites that have tremendous amounts of AAC related information on them.  A few to start with are:  AAC Institute http://www.aacinstitute.org/, AAC Tech Connecthttp://www.aactechconnect.com/, AT/AAC enABLES http://depts.washington.edu/enables/, YAACKhttp://aac.unl.edu/yaack/index.html, ISAAC http://www.isaac-online.org/en/home.shtml, and AAC-RERChttp://aac-rerc.psu.edu.

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