Friday, May 26, 2017

Augmentative Communication Basics and Beyond

Augmentative Communication Basics and Beyond

Date: Thursday, June 15, 2017
Time: 9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Place: SC Assistive Technology Program, Poplar Conference Room
Midlands Center, Poplar Building, 8301 Farrow Road, Columbia, SC 29203
Cost: $20
- Make checks payable to SC Assistive Technology Program. Mail checks to Carol Page, SCATP, USC School of Medicine, Columbia, SC 29208
- To pay by credit card, call Treginald Coleman at 803-935-5296. Be sure to mention the name of the workshop.
Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) is a complex issue for many parents and speech-language pathologists, but it doesn't have to be! Assessment and implementation of an augmentative and alternative communication system requires strategies for device selection, vocabulary selection, active participation, and facilitating functional communication experiences. This training contains basic information for the beginner or for someone who needs a refresher course on implementation of AAC systems.
Instructor: Carol Page, Program Manager, SC Assistive Technology Program

Carol A. Page, PhD, CCC-SLP, ATP, CBIS is the Manager of the South Carolina Assistive Technology Program (SCATP) at the USC School of Medicine, a University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, Center for Disability Resources, Department of Pediatrics. Carol is also an Adjunct Faculty member for the University of South Carolina Communication Sciences and Disorders department. She received her PhD degree in speech-language pathology from the University of South Carolina, her assistive technology professional certification from RESNA, and her Brain Injury Specialist certification from the Brain Injury Association of America. Carol provides trainings at a local, state, national and international level on assistive technology for persons with disabilities of all ages, their caregivers and professionals who serve them. She is the 2017 recipient of the Norman J. Arnold Alumni Award from the USC School of Public Health and the Louis M. DiCarlo Award for Outstanding Clinical Achievement from SCSHA.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

"How my husband and son are teaching strangers about autism"

My husband has a special talent for talking to strangers.  Correction: he has a talent for encouraging strangers to talk to him.
[Read More at Autism Speaks]

Laura Townsend Kane is a medical librarian at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine.  The youngest of her three sons has autism.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Wheelchair Tennis Event-FREE

This is from Pamela Banks of the SC Tennis Association:

Come one, come all!  

What: Wheelchair Tennis Training and Clinic
When: Saturday, June 3
Time: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
Where: Cayce Tennis Center, Congaree Drive, Cayce, SC 29033
Sponsor: Orthotic and Prosthetic Assistance Fund (OPAF)   

Morning session for therapists, teaching professionals and volunteers interested in learning more about grassroots wheelchair tennis.  Continuing Education Credits may apply and lunch will be provided.

Afternoon session will be an on court wheelchair tennis clinic and everyone is welcome!

This is being led by two time National Champion Sarah Casteel and supported by USTA SC and sponsored by USTA Wheelchair Tennis.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Register Now for the AAIDD 2017 Conference in Hartford, CT

Promoting Health & Wellbeing
AAIDD's 141st Annual Meeting, Promoting Health & Wellbeing, June 26-29 in Hartford, Connecticut, is really the "must attend" meeting of the year!
Join us for informative and inspiring plenary sessions, cutting edge concurrent sessions, posters addressing emerging issues, and in-depth pre- and post-conference meetings on a number of important topics.
See the full schedule of events, find hotel, and register by clicking here.
The deadline to register at the early bird rate is June 1, 2017.
Registration closes June 14! Register here.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Free Training Opportunities for Educators and School Staff through June 30

colorful picture of communication items like phones, tvs, computer, mail, pictures that say ring, ring,

The duration and time of day for each training can be tailored to fit the needs of professionals in your respective school or district. 

Choose from three great training topics 

  1. Social Security Benefits and Employment: Learn the nuts and bolts of what going to work may (and may not!) mean for your students who receive Social Security benefits. This training will equip professionals with the knowledge they need to challenge common misconceptions about SSI/SSDI and employment, available work incentives for beneficiaries, and the community resources available to provide one-on-one support to beneficiaries and their families.
  2. Supported Decision Making and Alternatives to Guardianship: While the evidence base for self-determination and decision making support for young adults with disabilities is expansive, the rate of guardianship has tripled in the US over the last 20 years. Studies indicate that most education professionals are largely unaware of what guardianship entails and the potential impacts it may have on post-school opportunities and outcomes for young adults. This training will prepare educators with the awareness they need to ensure that students and families are being provided an array of options for decision making support to maximize positive post-school outcomes.
  3. Self-Determination and Free Resources for Teachers: This training covers the evidence base behind self-determination as an essential set of skills and awareness for empowering students with disabilities in transition and improving post-school outcomes. Educators will be provided an overview of the free, evidence-based tools available for fostering self-determination skills, collecting data alongside SD skill acquisition, and implementing student-led IEPs.

To schedule a training, simply pick one of the above topics and click the button below.  For additional questions please call Charlie Walters at 803-779-5121 ext 133.

Thank you to the SC Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Services for making these training opportunities possible!

Able South Carolina.  Independent living for all

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Free Assistive Technology Trainings

Free Webinars -  General and Adult

AAC Devices, Tools and Apps for Individuals with Aphasia and Other Speech/Language Disabilities from AbilityTools
May 11th, 2017 at 10am Pacific, 1pm Eastern

Introducing the CA Voice Options Pilot Project from Ability Tools
May 16th, 2017 at 10am Pacific, 1pm Eastern

W4A and the Future of Accessible Work from PEAT Talks
May 18, 2017 at 1pm Pacific,  4pm Eastern

How to Improve Your (Website Access) Testing (For Beginners) from SSBARTGroup
May 23rd at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

Beginning with the Why: An Introduction to Closed Captioning from NCAEM
May 24, 2017 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

The Nuts and Bolts of Captioning and Describing Online Video from SSBARTGroup
May 25th at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

Free Webinars -  K-12 Educators & Parents

Finding and Funding Assistive Technology for Young Children from PACER
May 10, 2017 at 4:30pm Pacfiic, 7:30pm Eastern (90 minutes)

UDL and AEM: Provide Options for Physical Action from NCAEM
May 15, 2017 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

Learning Media Assessment & Assistive Technology Assessments for Students with Multiple Impairments: An Overview  from the Texas School for the Blind and VI
May 15, 2017 at 1pm Pacific, 4pm Eastern

Universal Design for Learning & Accessibility in K-12 Education: Designing Learning to Serve All Students from NCAEM
May 17, 2017 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

How to Create the Right Environment for Successful AAC Use in the Classroom from AbleNet on May 22, 2017 at 9am Pacific, 11am Eastern

Apps That Support Reading and Writing for Teens and Young Adults from Pacer
May 24, 2017 at 4:30pm Pacfiic, 7:30pm Eastern (90 minutes)

SETC webinars are at 3:30pm Pacific, 6:30pm Eastern

  • May 11, 2017  Mind Mapping Improves  Reading Comp. & Writing Skills
  • May 17, 2017  Boardmaker: Interactive Linking Boards & Moveable Buttons
  • May 18, 2017  Assessing the Need for AT Accommodations for Reading 
  • May 22, 2017  Creating Core Boards in Boardmaker Online
  • May 23, 2017  ChooseItMaker 3- Create Customized Content
  • May 24, 2017  Boardmaker Advanced 2: How to Create and Use Macros
  • May 25, 2017  Clicker Apps for Chrome
  • June 1, 2017   Clicker 7 Overview

Thursday, April 27, 2017

AT for Low Vision

AT for Low Vision

 Tuesday, May 9, 2017
1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
 8301 Farrow Road, Columbia, SC 29203
 (Required for all attendees)
Presenters: Frank Beard & Edna Beard, AT Consultants, Quintex Low Vision
Audience: teachers, administrators, VR counselors, students, AT consultants/specialists, individuals with low vision, and anyone interested in low vision technology
Description: Assistive Technology is a lifeline for people with low vision. From video magnifiers to screen enlargement software - all of these items are essential. Whether you're a teacher,   AT specialist, counselor, or person with low vision, this presentation will be of benefit. An overview of the latest and greatest - from portable video magnifiers to OCR products to units that do both distance and close-up - you will see it all. Please join us for this informative and hands-on presentation.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Governor Proclaims April 26 Advocacy Day!

Governor McMaster Proclaims April 26, 2017
Advocacy Day for Access and Independence in SC!

Individuals with Disabilities are recognized!

The SC Governor proclaimed that people with disabilities are capable and contributing members of South Carolina. Let's rally to show all of South Carolina that people with disabilities need full access and inclusion!

Share your stories on Social Media using the hashtag: #AccessInSC

FREE t-shirts available on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Thursday, April 20, 2017

An Introduction to Sign Language

An Introduction to Sign Language for Parents and Professionals

May 17th, 2017


(Make checks payable to “Jill Eversmann.” Due on date of training.)
*FREE for parents of children with special needs
*FREE for professionals who work with children with special needs

Poplar Conference Room at the SC Assistive Technology Program, 8301 Farrow Road, Midlands Center-Poplar Building, Columbia, SC 29203

15 participants


This is an introduction to sign language workshop. It covers 25 single signs, the manual alphabet, and numbers 1-10. Participants will learn and practice the signs and learn tips for teaching signs to children. It also covers how sign language can encourage speech and language development, enhance overall communication and reduce frustration for children who are not yet able to effectively communicate using speech.


Jill Eversmann is a pediatric speech-language pathologist with 30 years of experience and is a Signing Time instructor. In addition to working in early intervention, she teaches sign language workshops for parents and professionals and is a national speaker with Cross Country Education. She loves working with young children and their families, teaching sign language and sharing the many benefits signing can offer to preverbal and non-verbal children, children with hearing loss as well as to typically developing children. Jill received her B.S. in Speech-Language Pathology from James Madison University and her MS in Speech-Language Pathology from Towson University. She is ASHA certified and licensed in SC. 

MUSC is a clinical partner in groundbreaking autism research

MUSC is a clinical partner in groundbreaking autism research 

(The Post and Courier) - Researchers know that autism, a disorder associated with social and communication challenges, is caused both by genetics and by environmental factors. SPARK, an autism study launched last year by the Simons Foundation, aims to one day provide answers to the question of what causes autism and pinpoint potential treatments for the range of disorders on the autism spectrum. The Simons Foundation is a major research funder, particularly in the autism field.
"It would be nice to give them some real answers," said Laura Carpenter, a professor of pediatrics at the Medical University of South Carolina. MUSC became one of four new clinical partners in the study this year.
Carpenter said the average size of a study on autism is about 100 participants. Finding answers to autism's key questions has been a challenge because of such small sample sizes. Because autism disorders fall on a spectrum and symptoms associated with it can vary widely, much more genetic information is needed in order to draw conclusions. SPARK aims to enroll 50,000 study subjects nationwide and make their genetic information available — after informed consent is given — to researchers across the country.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Did You Register?


Free T-shirts on a first come, first serve basis!

Advocacy Day for Access and Independence
SC Statehouse North Steps
Rally to unlock barriers for people with disabilities!

Advocacy Day for Access and Independence will include a rally with speakers from the disability community, legislators, and disability advocates. Join us to help make South Carolina a better place for people with disabilities to live, work, and play!

For questions, 
or call 803.779.5121


Thursday, April 13, 2017

Join Us At the Five Points Fountain!

AASC Families & Friends,
Please join us Wednesday, April 12, at 3:45pm as we dye the Five Points Fountain BLUE in celebration of Autism Awareness Month!
WHO: AASC families, friends, staff, and supporters of Autism Awareness! Please invite your friends, family, and co-workers!
WHAT: Help us carry on the Autism Academy tradition of dyeing the Five Points Fountain BLUE!
WHEN: Wednesday, April 12th, immediately after dismissal, approximately 3:45-4:00pm
WHERE: Five Points Fountain, 747 Saluda Ave., Columbia, SC 29205
WHY: Increase Autism Awareness among your family, friends and neighbors!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Puberty & Sexuality Training

The South Carolina Autism Society developed a new 2 hour training called “The Birds, the Bees, ASDs, and Everything In-between” To navigate puberty we are asked to quickly develop new social skills and implement them correctly. Parents will leave this training with the knowledge to start taking on all the various challenges that come along with puberty and transitioning into adulthood. We cover basic topics such as bodily changes, privacy, and personal hygiene. We will discuss more in depth topics such as consent, safe sex, sexuality and gender identity, intimacy, and healthy relationships. Most importantly, we will be giving the parents the tools they need to actually have “The Talk” with their individual/s with ASD.

This class is FREE. 

Please click your desired location to register online now.
• May 27 — Charleston
• July 22 — Spartanburg
• August 26 — Myrtle Beach
• September 23 — West Columbia

Contact Breck at or 803-750-6988 for more information. 

Monday, April 10, 2017

BIASC's Golf Tourney

Join us on April 24, 2017, for our 14th Annual Golf Tournament
The Woodlands Golf & Country Club Columbia, SC

Proceeds from this event will assist BIASC in providing help and support to persons with brain injury and their families, educate the public on the risks and impact of brain injury, and advocate for legislation and improved medical and community based services.

            This year’s tournament is in memory of Dr. Linda Veldheer.

Dr. Veldheer was the Director of the Head and Spinal Cord Injury Division of the SC Department of Disabilities and Special Needs. She was a strong advocate for individuals with brain injuries and their families. She also was a member and supporter of BIASC. She attended our events, conferences, provided valuable information to our committees, and was a mentor. Linda was not a golfer but always was represented by her husband, David Johnson, at this annual event.

Come enjoy a day full of golf, 
lunch provided by Zaxby's, 
dinner served by the course afterwards, 
door prizes, Hole in One contest, 
and a chance to putt for a cash prize of $25,000!

Register or become a sponsor today by visiting 
You only have 2 weeks left till tee time! 


Tuesday, April 04, 2017

AT Webinars in April

Free Webinars - General and Adult

Free and Low-Cost Reading Tools for the Common Man from EASI
April 6 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

Hands-Free: An Intro to Switch Support on iOS Devices and Apple TV from AbleNet
April 25, 2017 at 10am Pacific, 1pm Eastern

Creating Audio Descriptions for Videos from EASI
April 24 at 12pm Pacific, 3pm Eastern

Free Webinars -  K-12 Educators & Parents

AEM in the IEP: Where Do Accessible Materials and Technologies Fit? from AEM
April 4, 2017 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

AT and Apps to Support Learners with Autism from CTD
April 5, 2017 17 at 1pm Pacific, 4pm Eastern

Play, Pause, Stop, Rewind: The Impact of Video in Instruction from AbleNet
April 11, 2017, 9am Pacific, 12pm Eastern for Part 2
April 20, 2017, same time for Part 3.  (Part 1 is archived.)

'Appy Hour' : Apps for Pre-Academic Skills from PACER
April 17, 2017 at 9am Pacific, 12pm Eastern

One Note - Helping Students with Organizational Difficulties from CallScotland
April 26, 2017 at 9am Pacific, 12pm Eastern, 30 min.

Ghotit - Writing and Reading Assistive Technology for People with Dyslexia and Dysgraphia from CallScotland
May 2, 2017 at 9am Pacific, 12pm Eastern, 30 min.

Classroom-wide Core Vocabulary Instruction for Students with Significant Cognitive Disabilities from AbleNet
May 2, 2017 at 11am Pacific, 2pm Eastern

SETC webinars are at 3:30pm Pacific, 6:30pm Eastern
• April 11, 2017   Google Apps & Extensions for Special Needs
• April 12, 2017  Math iPad apps: Mod Math, Panther Math paper and more
• April 13, 2017  Clicker 7 Overview
• April 17, 2017  No Boundaries. No Barriers, Kurzweil Presentation
• April 17, 2017  Partner Assisted Scanning  
• April 19, 2017  Team Approach to AT Assessment   
• April 20, 2017  Access to the iPad for Switch Users
• April 25, 2017  Managing iPads in Your District: Practical Strategies
• April 26, 2017  Team Approach to AT Implementation
• April 27, 2017  Read&Write Chrome Extension

Recently Recorded Webinars

Monday, April 03, 2017

Free AT Supports for Math Training

 AT Supports for Math

Date: April 5th, 2017
Time: 9:30 am – 11:30 am
Presenter: Madalina Tudora
Cost: Free

SCATP, 8301 Farrow Road, Columbia, SC 29203, Poplar Building Conference Room

Registration Link

As  students struggle with basic mathematical skills, the importance of addressing difficulties with math through use of AT has gained the attention of educators and parents. Generalization of math skills is important for the transfer of skills to other settings, assisting students in the completion of daily living tasks and more. This workshop explores various assistive technology tools for classroom use, including free and low cost resources designed to facilitate students success in mastering math skills.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Ways to Light It Up Blue!

Each year people across all seven continents come together to

Light It Up Blue 
on April 2
as we kickoff April
World Autism Month

We hope that you will encourage friends and family to:

Wear blue!
• Light your home blue
• Post photos using hashtag #LightItUpBlue
Make a donation
• Host an autism-friendly event

Find more ideas on our Light It Up Blue website!

With your help, we can make 2017 even bigger!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Julia, A Muppet With Autism, Joins The Cast Of 'Sesame Street'

For the first time in a decade, the classic children's television show Sesame Street will introduce a new Muppet on the air.

Her name is Julia. She's a shy and winsome 4-year-old, with striking red hair and green eyes. Julia likes to paint and pick flowers. When Julia speaks, she often echoes what she's just heard her friends Abby and Elmo say. Julia has autism.

"There's so many people that have given her what she is. I'm just hoping to bring her the heart," says Stacy Gordon, the veteran puppeteer selected to play the part.

Presenting Julia to the gang requires a bit more explanation of her differences and hidden talents for the other Muppets — and their young viewers. As Abby Cadabby (the 3-year-old fairy played by Leslie Carrara-Rudolph) explained during NPR's recent visit to the set in the Astoria neighborhood of Queens, N.Y., it can be hard to get Julia's attention. Big Bird had to repeat himself to get her to listen, for example. And she sees things where others don't.

"That's just Julia being Julia," Abby said.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

AT Expo - March 22nd!

SC Assistive Technology Expo 2017
Open to the General Public
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
8:30 am – 3:30 pm

Columbia Metropolitan Convention Ctr.
1101 Lincoln St., Columbia, SC 29201

Cost: Free
Parking: Free (on grounds and at Park Street Parking Garage, 1007 Park Street, Columbia)

 Over 70 exhibitors!
 Learn more about the SC Assistive Technology Expo 2017 at:

 The 2017 SC Assistive Technology Expo is sponsored by the SC Assistive Technology Program, Center for Disability Resources, USC School of Medicine, USC School of Medicine Department of Pediatrics, SC Department of Education, SC Developmental Disabilities Council.

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

AAIDD 2017 Conference: Register and Reserve Your Room Now!

Promoting Health & Well-being

AAIDD's 141st Annual Meeting, Promoting Health & Well-being, June 26-29 in Hartford, Connecticut is really the "must attend" meeting of the year!

See the full schedule of events, find hotel, and register by clicking here.

Join us for informative and inspiring plenary sessions, cutting edge concurrent sessions, posters addressing emerging issues, and in-depth pre- and post-conference meetings on a number of important topics.

The three plenary sessions at this year's conference will feature a host of insightful speakers who will provide their observations on how to promote health and well-being for and with people with intellectual disability across all life domains.

Health Equity

Sandy MagaƱa, PhD
University of Illinois at Chicago

Wendy Jones, MEd, MSW
Georgetown University

Tim Shriver, PhD
Special Olympics

Promoting Health & Wellbeing
Susan M. Havercamp, PhD, FAAIDD
President-Elect, AAIDD Board of Directors; The Ohio State University

American Association on Intellectual
and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD)
 501 3rd Street, NW, Suite 200
Washington, D.C. 20001
Telephone: 202-387-1968
Fax: 202-387-2193