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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Saturday, October 31, 2015

Affordable Autism & Technology Conference - Redlands, Nov 14 ($35)

Intergrating Technology in the Home, Community and School  Conference

Come hear from experts in the field –educators and SLPs who specialize in high tech and low tech methods to help promote teaching and communicating in the classroom, community and home!
Keynote Speaker:  Kristen Schulte, Speech Pathologist, Assistive Technology Specialist at Corona-Norco Unified School District
 Two tracks to choose from:
  • Education.  Literacy & Writing Technology including how to modify work using technology, technology include Co-Writer/Universal app data collection/Solo suite/ Word prediction/Adobe and Low Tech Solutions for the Classroom
  • Augmentative Communication.  Working Your Way through Proloquo2Go, Symbol hierarchy, Aided language stimulation, how to model AAC.
  • And much more!
There are a wide range of technology products available for special education students.  These products are designed to motivate students to learn, they can equalize education, build confidence and help these students find success. 
Cost is $25 before 11/1 and $35 after 11/1; lunch is not included. Scholarships may be available to cover half the cost of the conference.Co-sponsored by:
Autism Society Inland Empire
University of Redlands – Department of Communicative Disorders
University of Redlands – School of Education

Friday, October 30, 2015

Nov 12 - Benefit for A Voice Discovered

If you haven't heard of A Voice Discovered, let me introduce you to this fantastic organization out of Ventura County that actively fundraises so that they can provide funding assistance for AAC assessment and intervention to folks in need.  

From their website: A Voice Discovered will help the person with complex communication needs obtain a thorough AAC assessment if he or she does not already have one.  A Voice Discovered will also consider applicants for funding assistance for devices/communication apps once they have had a thorough AAC assessment.  

Please consider helping AVD do this great work by attending their upcoming, 2nd Annual Casino Night Fundraiser (Nov 21) or with an in-kind contribution (Donate HERE).

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Workshop: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment of Childhood Apraxia in Speech (Pomona, Nov 5)

CSHA District 7 and Pomona Unified School District Present Edyth Strand for a full day, Thursday November 5th (6 CEUs). 
Download the flyer, HERE
Workshop Description

Edythe Strand is an international expert on Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS). She has presented at numerous conferences and workshops as well as having written multiple publications on the topic of CAS. This is a unique opportunity for the Southern California SLP to attend and participate in a Dr. Strand presentation.
This one-day course focuses on both assessment and treatment of CAS. Assessment procedures will be described and interpretation of assessment data will be discussed to facilitate the participant’s ability to determine which children actually have at least some degree of difficulty with praxis for speech. A number of treatment strategies will be discussed and available evidence for treatment efficacy is presented. Video examples are used to facilitate discussion.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

"The Strange Case of Anna Stubblefield": Reaction

For those of us on the fringes of the facilitated communication (FC) community, this week's article in the NY Times magazine came as an unexpected blow and a sour case of deja vu. While not a damning scientific study as in the 80's, Mrs. Stubblefield's relationship with her client, prosecution and criminal conviction remind the disabilities rights community to tread with caution when providing physical support to communicators. 

Might I strongly suggest adopting the following protocol on the provision of backward resistant physical support for pointing (my preferred, descriptive name for "facilitation") as a treatment approach: (LINK to download a slideshow version
    • When support is provided anywhere below the elbow (such as forearm, wrist or hand), ONLY rely on the client's responses to predictable questions (e.g., with a known answer or multi-choice) - even if you believe they have more to say. Work on fading support before relying on generative responses.
    • Then, only when support is faded to the elbow, can we rely on the responses of clients when they share their original ideas and answer open-ended questions (e.g., What did you do last night? What's your favorite movie? Is there anything you want to say?)
    • Help the client learn to move more independently; try to move support from hand, to wrist, to forearm, to elbow EVERY time you practice pointing/typing.
    • Always include more than one 'facilitator' in the training process. Individuals that show potential for pointing with backward resistant support MUST be able to do so with more than just their therapist or teacher. It is our responsibility to include no fewer than one other facilitator in any client's life. This might be a parent, caregiver, sibling, aide or related professional.
    • Teach your communicators who require  that they MUST learn to point/type with more than one 'facilitator,' or else listeners cannot rely on their messages. 
    • Share with your client that independence (i.e., no physical support) and pointing/typing with multiple 'facilitators' is the goal.
    • It's the ethical thing to do!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Open House - Language and Learning Centers of America, 11/4 & 5

Please join SCAACN in attending the upcoming Open House at Language and Learning Centers of America. Not familiar with LLCA? What a great reason to pay them a visit?! 
Download flyer, HERE.

Not able to attend? Read more about the Visual Immersion System care of Brookes Publishing HERE. Hear from Howard Shane and Meghan O'Brien directly in this 3-part webcast, HERE.

Friday, October 16, 2015

JOBS! Ventura County Speech/AAC Specialist

SCAAC-N is very sad to see our colleague Sharon Redner, SLP, leaving SoCal for a bright future in Northern CA as the Assistive Technology Specialist for the Fremont Unified School District. 

Sharon will be missed tremendously! And will be vacating her position at Ventura County's Office of Education on November 6th. Applications currently being accepted for this exceptional position: Speech & Language Specialist/Augmentative Communication Specialist. Search it on Ed Join or link HERE.

EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE: Master’s degree in Speech and Language and valid Speech/Language Credential from accredited university and experience in AAC and assistive technology. 
LICENSES AND OTHER REQUIREMENTS: Valid California credential authorizing services as a Speech Therapist; valid California driver's license. Willing to successfully complete the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA) examination to meet the requirement to be certified as an Assistive Technology Practioner within a three year period. Willing to successfully complete the Diagnostic Center Southern California AAC Assessment Training within a two year period. A complete application package MUST include the following: • A completed VCOE certificated employment application. • Resume. • A copy of your Credential(s). • Three current letters of reference. Current is 2014 to present. • A letter of introduction telling why you feel qualified for this position and what you have to offer VCOE. 
Note: Hard copy application & a hard copy of materials are not required if applying online at

Perhaps Sharon will be inspired to launch a NCAAC-Network in the future...We hope that she will keep in touch!

- Gwendolyn for SCAAC-N

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Fall Quarterly Meetings! Pasadena and San Diego

Fall Quarterly Meeting - LA/Pasadena, October 20th

This Fall the Los Angeles/Pasadena branch will meet on Tuesday, October 20th. Many thanks to Anne Davis of Professional Child Development Associates (PCDA) for hosting "Update on iPad AAC Apps." 
  • GoTalk Now, 
  • Autismate, 
  • TouchChat and 
  • Proloquo2Go
Four presenters will get the conversation started with the ins and outs of four AAC apps including features, alternative access, and vocabulary options. Be sure to download the latest update of these fine apps to your iPad and join us Tuesday at 6:30 to hear and see from Loyal Truong, Bernadette Kennard, Terry Kappe and Gwendolyn Eberhard

Tuesday, October 20th6:30-8:30 p.m. 
(presentation will start promptly at 6:30 due to the amount of great ideas we have to share!)
Professional Child Development Associates (PCDA)
620 N. Lake Ave, Pasadena 91101, small conference room upstairs
Fall Quarterly Meeting
Topic - Update on iPad AAC Apps
AAC-Interested folks like you, your colleagues, AAC parents, teachers, therapists, administrators, etc.

FREE as always. Carpool with a friend!

Please RSVP by Monday, Oct 19 (reply to this email) so we will know to have a seat for you.

Fall Quarterly Meeting - San Diego, November 4th

The SoCal AAC Network has branches in Pasadena, Ventura, and Orange Counties and we are so excited to announce....San Diego! Come and join the inaugural quarterly meeting for Fall, Thursday, November 4th! And please reach out and forward a link to this post to AAC-interested folks you might know in greater San Diego County.

Hosted by - United Cerebral Palsy San Diego: Susan Berkowitz and Bruce Fleming; Crimson Center for Speech and Language: Karyn Searcy; SoCal AAC Therapy: Margaret Perkins

Thursday, November 4th6:00-8:00
, 8665 Gibbs Drive Suite 100, San Diego, CA 92123

Snacks and drinks will be provided but feel free to “Brown Bag” your dinner!!!
Fall Quarterly Meeting
Nov 4th's Topic - As this is the first meeting we will have a meet and greet, bring topic ideas for future meetings, and feel free to share one AAC idea “What I Know for Sure”

FREE! Always. Bring a colleague.

For additional information on San Diego's new branch, please contact
or Bruce Fleming 

​...for Winter Quarterly Meetings, 2016

Orange County (Location: OCDE, Costa Mesa) - Thursday, January 14th 

Ventura County (A1 Speech Therapy) Thursday, January 28th

Pasadena (Villa Esperanza) Tuesday, February 16th

Affordable ASHA CEU Workshop - From Assessment to Implementation (Camarillo)

Nov 04, 2015 at 9:00 AM — 3:30 PM

Professional Building, 155 Granada Street, Suite C
Camarillo, CA 93010

Holly Schneider MA CCC/SLP


Cost: $20.00

Course Description:
Innovation in technology combined with the latest AAC research has enabled individuals with significant communication challenges to access powerful tools for interactive and efficient communication. This session will address the design strategies, development process and research behind the Tobii Dynavox product communication content. Participants will explore both Compass and Communicator software and learn the purpose and function of each communication tool and learn the key elements for successful AAC assessment, planning and implementation. 
Using video examples, case studies and relevant research, participants will explore how the communication tools found in both the Compass and Communicator page sets can be used to support language and literacy development, social participation and efficient communication. Participants will leave with a collection of practical ideas and tools that can be immediately implemented with individuals of various ages, abilities, and communication levels.
Learning Objectives:  Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to: 
•Identify key elements of the content design process.
•Describe 3 research articles that influenced the content design on the Compass and Communicator page sets.
• Compare and contrast efficiency and precision communication tools.
•Locate evaluation and therapy resources to support effective AAC service delivery.

This course is offered for .5 ASHA CEUS (Introductory Level, Professional Area)

Presented by: Holly Schneider, MA CCC-SLP

Holly Schneider, MA CCC-SLP, has prior experience as an Elementary & Intermediate English and Language Arts teacher. After graduating from the University of Texas in 2000 with a Master’s degree in Speech and Language Pathology, she began a clinical career at St. David’s Rehabilitation Hospital, working with clients ranging in age from adolescent to geriatric.  Here her focus and passion grew towards working with augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) to increase her clients’ ability to participate more fully in their lives. Now with TobiiDynavox she is presently a member of the Clinical Training & Implementation Team where she develops and conducts internal and customer trainings, creates implementation resources, and presents at local, national and international conferences about AAC topics. She has publications in JMSLP (2010) and most recently in Advance Healthcare Network for Speech and Hearing (2015).

Financial Disclosure: Holly is a full time employee at Tobii Dynavox. 

Non-financial Disclosure: Holly has no non-financial relationships and the publications written have no non-financial relationship with the content of the presentation. 

Content Disclosure: Because of the unique characteristics of our product(s), this presentation will focus exclusively on the Tobii Dynavox product line and will not include information on other similar communication or educational product(s).

This location is directly off the freeway across the street from the In and Out. There was no name for the building.