Events Calendar

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Tuesday, February 27th, 2018 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm EST

What does it mean for instructional technology specialists and assistive technology specialists to truly collaborate with one another? As Universal Design for Learning (UDL) has swept through the education world it has created a path for new and innovative collaboration. UDL has blurred many of the previous lines between instructional and assistive technologies. This has prompted the clear need not only for more technology but also the awareness of and training on inclusive uses of technology. This session will address the benefits of such a partnership and how it is beneficial for student learning and professional collaborations.


Mary Shannon Marcella

Mary Shannon Marcella is a speech-language pathologist with a special interest in the field of Augmentative and Alternative Communication for students with severe needs and access challenges. As the Assistive Technology Coordinator for Boston Public Schools, she is responsible for coordinating all Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) and Assistive Technology (AT) consultations, evaluations, trainings, and professional development in the district. She is a 2010 graduate from Northeastern University and developed her passion in the area of AAC during her time working at Perkins School for the Blind in undergrad. She has presented both nationally and internationally at ATIA and ISAAC.

Rhianon E. Gutierrez

Rhianon E. Gutierrez is a learning designer and consultant. Her varied background includes instructional design, media production, and disability advocacy. As a Digital Learning Specialist in the Boston Public Schools, she builds district-wide partnerships around inclusive uses of technology and leads and supports blended professional learning for teachers and school and district leaders. She has taught media arts and technology to elementary through adult learners. Rhianon’s lived experiences with disability have informed her work as a national advocate, speaker, and consultant on inclusive design. Rhianon has presented nationally at ISTE, ATIA, South by Southwest, HLAA, Building Learning Communities (BLC17), and more. She currently serves on the board of ISTE’s Inclusive Learning Network and holds graduate certification in assistive technology.

Thursday, March 1st, 2018 - 12:30pm to 1:30pm EST

This event is the first of a 3-part series focusing on assistive technology for study skills. Researching and taking notes is an important activity central to the academic lives of many teens and adults. This webinar for parents begins with a discussion of the purpose of note-taking and useful strategies to employ. Tools include a range of technology supports for taking notes while listening to information and instruction, taking notes while reading, and organizing the information. Demonstrations will include a smart pen, audio recording apps, research tools, and mind mapping.


This webinar is presented by Tara Bruss and Sarah Giffen-Hunter, Assistive Technology Specialists at PACER’s Simon Technology Center in Minnesota. They both specialize in helping teens and adults find the tools to help them be successful in high school, college, and employment.

Wednesday, March 14th, 2018 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm EDT

Let’s talk math apps and assistive technology tools to support access to math assignments for diverse learners! This engaging session will focus on supporting diverse learners on all platforms and devices, using iOS apps (iPhone/ iPad) and Google Chrome Apps & Extensions (Laptops, Chromebooks, Windows) to supplement math curricula and student skills in the classroom. Many schools are implementing 1 to 1 programs or “Going Google,” with Google Apps and Chromebooks. This session will address supporting diverse learners on ALL devices, using apps, extensions, and free web resources, as well as tactile/physical tools & AT equipment to support and develop the math skills that students may find challenging. AT for accessing math assignments in accessible formats will be discussed, including digital, enlarged, and tactile formats. Apps, tools, and assistive technologies will be demonstrated to support foundational math skills, as well as more complex math skills in areas such as Algebra, Geometry, Word Problems, Fractions, Math drills, Automaticity, and more. Access and support for all students, including those with Dyslexia, Specific LDs, who are Blind or have Low Vision, Physical Disabilities, and CVI will be introduced.


Diana Petschauer, M.Ed., ATP is a RESNA certified Assistive Technology Professional, AT Consultant & founder of AT for Education, ATforED.com, and Access4Employment. Diana has over 20 years of experience in Special Education, UDL & Assistive Technology, PreK-Grade 12, Post-Secondary, and Adult Services. She also presents and trains nationally and internationally. Diana travels daily to provide AT Evaluations, Consultation, Training to students and adults, as well as professional development for educators, professionals, and families. Prior to her business, Diana was the AT Specialist at UNH, Disability Services. She started her career in public school Special Education services. Diana manages her multi-disciplinary team of expert consultants who travel daily throughout New England to provide AT & AAC evaluations, assessments, training (for students, staff and family), professional development workshops & webinars, online courses, consultation & accessibility services for students and adults to access education, the workplace, and community.

Thursday, March 22nd, 2018 - 12:30am to 1:30pm EDT

This CTD event is the second of a 3-part series focusing on study skills. Students are often not aware of the most effective ways to review information and deepen their learning. Strategies presented for review and learning will include a look at mnemonics, as well as tools that utilize our various senses. Learning can be enhanced with tools that engage us with information in a multisensory manner, a combination of 2 or more senses such as visual, auditory, vestibular (movement), or tactile (kinesthetic). The presentation will also cover resources for research, homework help, and supplementary learning through online courses. 


This webinar is presented by Tara Bruss and Sarah Giffen-Hunter, Assistive Technology Specialists at PACER’s Simon Technology Center in Minnesota. They both specialize in helping teens and adults find the tools to help them be successful in high school, college, and employment.

Thursday, May 3rd, 2018 - 12:30pm to 1:30pm EDT

This CTD event is the third of a 3-part series focusing on study skills. Managing one’s focus and attention can be challenging for students of all ages, and yet often crucial for academic success. This webinar will cover strategies for boosting one’s focus. Demonstrations will include timers that support focus, apps to track smartphone use, and tools to manage online distractions. The presenters will also discuss methods and strategies to support attention that incorporate the visual, auditory, tactile, and vestibular senses. 


This webinar is presented by Tara Bruss and Sarah Giffen-Hunter, Assistive Technology Specialists at PACER’s Simon Technology Center in Minnesota. They both specialize in helping teens and adults find the tools to help them be successful in high school, college, and employment.

Wednesday, May 16th, 2018 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm EDT

Students with disabilities can benefit from using assistive technology (AT) to support a wide variety of skills. But what is assistive technology and how do you select and appropriately use it? In this introductory CTD event, we’ll cover what assistive technology is, the legal consideration process for choosing assistive technology and some of the different types of tools that are available for students of all ages.