ATIA 2015 Session Strands

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To help you make the most of the professional development opportunities available at the ATIA Orlando conference, the Conference Committee has planned the conference around 11 strands that take a balanced approach to exploring the most important questions and issues that face educators in the field today, enabling you to focus on a specific area of interest or need. Each strand is led by invited leaders in the strand content or subject matter area.  Sessions undergo a blind peer-review by strand advisors to be selected for the final conference program.

Accessibility

Assistive Technology for Improved Function (ATIF)

Augmentative and Alternative Communication

Core Standards

Education/Learning

Everyday Technology

International

Leadership

Microsoft Technology in Education 

Research

Sensory Impairment

Workplace and Vocational Rehabilitation

Educational Program Chair

 

Accessibility

Strand Advisor(s):

Sharon Spencer, International Association of Accessibility Professionals (IAAP)

Strand Description:

Sessions focus on the design and development of accessible technology as it relates to hardware, software, web sites, mobile applications, proprietary applications, content & documents. Topics in this strand may be of interest to developers, designers, testers and others involved in the development lifecycle or others who support the implementation of accessible technology.

Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Best practices in design and development of accessible technology
  • Accessibility practices and services in Higher Education
  • Issues & challenges related to accessibility
  • Specific technology implementations, such as mobile technology
  • Interoperability between IT & AT
  • Testing and tools for accessibility
  • Discussion of standards and policies
  • Business case for accessibility

Assistive Technology for Improved Function (ATIF)

Strand Advisor(s):

Sandy Hanebrink, OTR/L, Touch the Future. Inc.
Robin Jones, Great Lakes ADA Center
Judith Schoonover, Loudoun County Public Schools, Ashburn, VA

Strand Description:

Sessions focus on the use of assistive technology for improved function and access in individuals with physical disabilities or disorders, other functional impairments, and impairments related to aging in environments and communities such as school, home, work, recreation, and general public access. Sessions in this strand may be of special interest to occupational therapists, physical therapists, special educators, engineers, assistive technology professionals and independent living specialists, but will also be of interest to others who support individuals with functional limitations that may impact access, participation, productivity, and achievement. Technologies may include: alternate keyboard/mouse, eye gaze, head pointers, scanning, switches, innovative text entry technologies, Environmental Control Units (ECUs), mobile devices, mounting devices, functional seating and mobility technologies, home modification technologies, activities of daily living technologies, adaptive recreation and disabled sports technologies and technologies for improved public access. Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Aging in Place
  • Accessible Toys, Play and Play Grounds
  • Community Access Technologies
  • Computer Access Technologies
  • Education Access
  • Employment Access
  • Environment Access
  • Functional Seating and Positioning and AT in Rehabilitation
  • Home Access Technologies
  • Adaptive Recreation & Disabled Sports Technologies
  • Transition to Environment/Community
  • Independent Living

Augmentative and Alternative Communication

Strand Advisor(s):

Amy Goldman, Temple University, representing ASHA Division 12, AAC
Carole Zangari, Nova Southeastern University

Strand Description:

Sessions focus on low to high tech support of communication for individuals, infancy through adulthood, with complex communication needs. Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Assessment
  • Communication devices and strategies for successfully obtaining speech generating devices
  • Communication for interaction
  • Device and interface design
  • Intervention strategies for communicative competence
  • iPads and other mobile devices
  • Language and syntax
  • Literacy
  • Visual supports
  • Vocabulary 

Core Standards

Strand Advisor(s):

Karen Erickson, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Strand Description:

The Common Core State Standards have become the norm across the United States.  This consistent, clearly articulated set of standards represent a newfound, national focus on insuring that all students exit high school with the skills they need to be success in college, career, and beyond.   Sessions in this strand focus on the specific ways new and existing assistive technologies and approaches address the assessment and instructional demands Common Core from kindergarten through 12th grade.

 

Education/Learning

Strand Advisor(s):

Kelly Fonner, Fonner Consulting
Scott Marfilius, Marfilius Consulting

Strand Description:

Sessions in this strand focus on the use of assistive technology with students in Early Childhood, K-12, and University educational programs and virtual classroom settings. Presentations should be submitted from teachers, related service providers, parents or support staff working with students who have learning disabilities, cognitive disabilities and/or multiple disabilities. Students are especially welcome as a part of the presentation team. Submissions are encouraged on implementation presentations of multiple products/systems rather than single product related presentations. Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Technology to Support Developmentally Appropriate Practice in Early Childhood
  • Assistive Technology Supports for Reading & Writing
  • Assistive Technology Supports for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math)
  • Accessible Instructional Materials
  • Differentiated Instruction through Technology
  • Technology Supports for Organization, Behavior &/or Tasks in School Settings
  • Transitions with Technology to Higher Education
  • National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standards/Center (NIMAS/NIMAC)
  • Universal Design for Learning

Everyday Technology

Strand Advisor(s):

Kirk Behnke, Region 4 Education Service Center, Texas
Brian Wojcik, University of Nebraska at Kearney

Strand Description:

Sessions focus on applications of technologies that are commonly used by the general public but have features and functions that lend themselves for use by persons with disabilities or those working with persons with disabilities.

  • Web Applications (including Web 2.0)
  • Applications of Commonly Used Software
  • Readily Available Technologies
  • Portable and Smart Technologies
  • Ubiquitous Technologies, apps and more

International

Strand Advisor(s):

David Banes, Mada Center, Qatar Assistive Technology and Accessibility Center
Axel Leblois, G3ict, Global Initiative for Inclusive ICTs
Francesca Cesa Bianchi, G3ict, Global Initiative for Inclusive ICTs

Strand Description:

The International Strand is designed for those in international roles or in leadership positions with international organizations or agencies to be learn, network and share information on AT programs and services from around the world.  Those engaged in the international field face challenges in obtaining current information on best practices for implementing support infrastructure/s to provide assistive technology to their different constituent groups.  This new strand, led by groups engaged in these important initiatives at both a global level and individual country/regional levels, will provide insights and real world examples of what works and what doesn’t work in the arena of AT provision and service delivery. The difficulties of providing national language support for assistive technology and training materials will be included as component of the many challenges involved in this field. Sessions will include topics such as:

  • Global Programs and examples of service delivery models
  • Meeting international and national legal mandates and moving from policy to practice
  • Effective models of AT service delivery – from around the world
  • National language provision
  • New approaches to professional development
  • Coaching and mentoring to develop communities of practice
  • Dissemination of information and sharing of digital resources
  • Assessing impact and using data for improvement planning
  • Networking and social collaboration opportunities 
  • Where is the action?  CRPD Progress Report on Assistive Technologies policies and programs among 76 countries
  • A roadmap to jumpstart effective national support eco-systems: The UNESCO/G3ict Model Policy for Inclusive ICTs in Education
  • Workplace accommodation innovations from around the world: case studies from leading corporations
  • The impact of International developments in public procurement on accessible ICTs and assistive technologies
  • How mobile assistive solutions are opening  up new opportunities around the world 

Leadership

Strand Advisor(s):

Diana Carl, Independent Consultant
Denise DeCoste, Accessible Technology Consulting

Strand Description:

Those in leadership positions, whether at a team, district, regional, state, or national level, face many challenges in moving policy and change forward to impact achievement of educational, vocational and life goals.  Current realities include meeting federal, state, and local mandates with shrinking funds.  Yet, today’s networking tools offer new avenues for service delivery such as providing learning opportunities and developing professional learning communities.  Sessions include topics such as:

  • Meeting legal mandates and moving from policy to practice
  • Effective models of AT service delivery
  • New approaches to professional development
  • Coaching and mentoring to develop communities of practice
  • Innovative methods for AT integration within a UDL framework
  • Outreach initiatives to effect systems change
  • Dissemination of information and sharing of digital resources
  • Assessing impact and using data for improvement planning

Microsoft Technology in Education

Strand Advisor: 

Daniel Hubbell, Senior Program Manager – Accessibility Ecosystem, Microsoft Corporation

Strand Description: 

Sessions focus on great teaching and learning activities for students with disabilities, innovative and unique ways to use Microsoft technologies in the curriculum, and ways to utilize Microsoft technology for the integration of students with disabilities into mainstream classrooms.

Microsoft technologies include but are not limited to:

  • Office 365
  • Skype
  • Windows tablets
  • Windows 8
  • Special Ed apps running on Windows
  • Kinect

Research

Strand Advisor(s):

Steve Bauer, Project Officer, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR)

Ben Satterfield, Chair, ATIA Research Committee
Roger O. Smith, Ph.D., O.T. FATA, RESNA Fellow, representing RESNA

Strand Description:

Topics include research related to:

  • Research and development of specific assistive technologies,
  • Studies of consumer performance, perceptions, attitudes, use and abandonment related to assistive technology,
  • Examination of assistive technology assessment,  intervention, service delivery  instruction
  • Special consideration will be given to graduate and post-graduate student posters submissions.

Sensory Impairment

Strand Advisor(s):

Ike Presley, American Foundation for the Blind

Strand Description:

Sessions include Blind/Low Vision, Deaf/Hard of Hearing and Deaf/Blind presentations related to issues that impact the use of assistive technology in personal, educational and workplace solutions. Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs)
  • Audio and Sound technologies of interest to hard-of-hearing persons
  • Braille technologies
  • Communication devices of interest to deaf persons
  • Digital talking books, E-book readers and DAISY
  • Mobile Devices and Applications
  • Remote communication services for deaf and hard-of-hearing persons
  • Scan and read systems
  • Screen reading software
  • Speech-to-text services
  • Video magnifiers (CCTVs) and screen magnification
  • Web accessibility

Workplace and Vocational Rehabilitation

Strand Advisor(s):

Teresa Goddard, representing Job Accommodation Network
Mike Marotta, Assistive Technology Services, Advancing Opportunities

Strand Description:

Sessions in this strand focus on providing solutions to enable people with disabilities to obtain or retain employment. Topics will include utilizing technology tools to assist with matching the person’s skills to job tasks and developing job related action plans for success.

Educational Program Chair

Strand Advisor(s):

Joy Zabala, CAST

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