The Southern California Augmentative and Alternative Communication Network... a support group for professional development, problem solving, leadership, mentoring, and training in the use of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) to develop communication in non-speaking and minimally verbal individuals in the Southern California Region.

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Thursday, January 3, 2013

PRC: Alternative Access & FREE training 1/24/13, Santa Ana, CA

Go to PRC's Website HERE
Using Alternative Access  
Using Alternative Access?  Here are the top five little known features in the PRC 'Access Method Menu' that can have a big impact on alternative access.
To avoid unnecessary distraction for early learners using a joystick, a trackball, head tracking or eye gaze, limiting their selections to just the words on the screen can help.  Items like the toolbox, drop down menus, user keys, the manual pause, and even the text area can be made inactive by simply setting each item to 'off' in the access method menu.
One of the most challenging aspects of using a single switch for scanning is the timing element.  By turning scan auto restart 'off', the individual will be able to manually restart the scan after making a selection.  While this step will add a significant number of required switch activations over time, it may make a big difference for the early learner.
Having trouble with accidental activations with a joystick, trackball, or eye gaze?  Changing the selection type from 'auto' or 'dwell' to 'manual' will allow for control that is much like clicking a mouse.  While it requires more motor control, a manual selection may be something to try for early learners or individuals who otherwise struggle to make a selection within a set timeframe.
Especially with switch scanners and touch access, increasing the release time by just 1 or 2 tenths of a second can make all the difference for someone who is making multiple activations when only one is intended.
Turning this function 'on' will allow blank keys to be ignored by the access method.  If you are scanning with a switch, these keys get skipped.  When using direct selection, blank keys cannot be selected.  For someone using touch, they become essentially 'dead', and when using head tracking or a joystick they will provide 'rest stops'.
Unity Language for LifeDate:  January 24, 2013
Time:  9:00am - 3:30pm
Facility:  Assistive Technology Exchange Center
Location:  Santa Ana, CA
Attend This Training

This course will focus on the features of Unity for Unity 60, 84, and 144 (Accent, ECO, or Vantage Lite devices). Participant will review overlays and icon features/functions, Unity Pattern 1 (verbs, nouns, adjectives, and adverbs) and Unity Pattern 2 (pronouns). You will also learn Unity Pattern 3 (pronoun phrases), Unity Pattern 4 (noun categories), Unity Pattern 5 (closed class categories), and strategies for teaching Unity vocabularies.

Devices for this training are not required. If you choose to bring a device, please bring an ECO, Accent 1200, Vanguard, Vantage, Vantage Lite, or laptop computer pre-loaded with the appropriate PASS software.
Julie Dunbar, M.S., Ed.
Phone:  (800) 262-1984 Ext. 445

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