Finding CTD Resources on Assistive Technology to Support Families

This webinar, presented by PACER Center, gives an introduction to finding helpful resources from the Center on Technology and Disability (CTD) to support families. Information covered includes topic areas, types of resources, and tips for navigating and searching the CTD website. The webinar was created as a resource for professionals at parent centers, but may also be useful for family members wishing to learn more about accessing CTD resources. Get the PowerPoint Slides here.


Presenters: AT Specialists from PACER’s Simon Technology Center

- Welcome to the webinar on Resources on Assistive Technology to Support the PTI CPRC Network. And we are very happy and excited that you are joining us. We're sharing some great information today on the CTD website as well as the binder of resources we have put together. That is a great resource to share with families. So we are one of CTD's partners. We're the PACER Simon Technology Center. And this is a recorded webinar so you won't have to worry about sound or being on mute. We do recommend using headphones to have the best listening experience. And since again, this is not live, you won't be able to use the chat window, so if you do have questions we still welcome your questions, but please email your questions to So today we're going to talk about the Center on Technology and Disability what the organization is and what it is about, and a little bit about us from PACER center, the Simon Technology Center. And then and overview of the CTD website, the CTD resources, and then the resource binder. We have two versions, the printed version and the digital version that we'll be sharing with you. So the Center on Technology and Disability was funded though the US Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs also called OSEP. There are three main partners, FHI 360, American Institutes of Research, and then PACER Center, us. The website and the Center of Technology and Disability was designed to increase the capacity of families and providers to advocate for, acquire, and implement effective assistance and instructional technology practices, devices, and services. And so this website is filled with lots of resources that provide information on assistive technology, acquiring it, using it, implementation, and a variety of methods. And so there are resources that can be read, there are resources that can be listened to such as webinars and videos and also watched such as videos. And there also learning opportunities through online courses as well. So this website is meant to be really a place to find a lot of information that has been collected through a variety of resources. And so the hope is that you can find what you're needing through this website and not needing to go to many other locations. We are from the PACER Simon Technology Center. PACER is a parent advocacy and parent training center for families with children with disabilities. And we are part of, we are from the Simon Technology Center which is focused and dedicated to assistive technology and helping families and professionals learn about assistive technology what the options are and implementation strategies, and how to use the devices.

- This is a good point to introduce ourselves.

- Oh yes, I'm Tara Bruss.

- And I'm Sarah Giffen-Hunter. And we're both assistive technology specialists at PACER.

- Thank you.

- So before we launch into looking at the CTD website, this slide is reviewing different learning styles. So there are a variety of kinds of resources on the website and for you as a professional or for families that you are working with, there are different learning styles, different ways of taking in information. So one of course would be reading online articles, research papers, fact sheets, lists, forms. Another way if you are more visual or auditory, would be listening and watching. So there are live webinars, there are archived webinars and other videos. And then for a more social kind of experience, there is connecting through Twitter, live webinars, and email. So with that, I'm going to go ahead and switch to the CTD website. There we go. So there's the home screen of the CTD website. And the way it is organized, you'll see here at the top there are three main tabs. The first one being the Library, and this is where there is a great wealth of resources that we're going to dive into a little deeper in a little bit here. And then there's also the Webinars page. On the left are the recorded webinars that are available to view, and on the right hand side you'll see upcoming events. Now you do need to go up to this Register button in order to register. You need to register for a free CTD account in order to register for an upcoming webinar. And then over here to the right is the e-learning, and those are online courses that are available. Same thing, you can see here it will ask you to register or login to participate in an online course. This one here at the bottom, I just wanted to highlight, Assistive Technology 101, so it's a basic introductory, I think four module course that's a really nice introduction to assistive technology. So going back to the homepage, another way to navigate the website over here to the right, these boxes is through the audience landing pages. So here you see State and Local Leaders, and the Teachers & Researchers, I'm just going to click on that one so you can see what this landing page looks like. Teacher/researcher portal, and below here you see Featured Resources and then also Webinars and Learning Materials. And these pages are updated and we rotate resources through there monthly, so it's a nice place to check back and see what's there. And so you can enter the library directly through that avenue, I'm going to go back and show you the Families landing page. So we just click on Families. Basically taking you to resources that we've identified as helpful, sometimes they're newly added resources. Here is an example of a Spanish language document that was translated into Spanish for when you are working with those families. And then some relevant webinar stuff that is appropriate for the family audience. And then I'm going to go back to the homepage and pass it over to Tara again.

- So I want to show you as we enter into the Library tab, these are going to be materials that can be read, so different articles. And there will be additional formats in here as well that I'm going to point out to you. But as we look at these are divided into different categories such as early childhood, education K through 12, family and student support transition and state and local leaders. So you can find the category that is most appropriate to what information you're interested in. And there's additionally subcategories. So this is further narrowing down to provide relevant information based on your interest. And so we can see under subcategories, AT for developments and participation, funding acquisitions. So I'm going to go into one of these categories to show you what search results look like. I'm clicking on early childhood, and then we can see a list of relevant information. And so pdf is the document that you can read with your eyes, and then if we look at This is not focusing on a subcategory yet, so if we dropdown a menu that way we can choose a subcategory, and this will filter out other categories and just this particular one. And look on funding and acquisitions. Some of these subcategories, you will notice are relevant to other categories as well, and so you'll see some of this information duplicated across, but this is showing how it's really providing information to the categories and subcategories as relevant. So here we see on the left side an icon for Webpage, and so that would be a webpage that you could link to. Here is a link for a video, and I'm looking for a PowerPoint icon but I don't see one yet. So let's go through some more subcategories. ISSP Process, so information related to ISSP. Here's a video for a webinar, so when we see webinars for PowerPoint they're going to likely be a matching either PowerPoint or a webinar. And so if you're interested in that particular learning material, than you can do a search for that title in our search bar to find the other pieces related to this, if it's not linked together. And so we can see there's a description and then here is the link to watch it. And the transcript as well is provided below the video. So now we can move back out and so you might have noticed on the screen there is a gray bar towards the top, and that is also showing us a navigation and the categories that we have drilled down into so right now it's showing us Education K-12, without a subcategory listed. And so when we choose one, it's going to list that subcategory here as well. So we can also navigate this way by clicking back through the hierarchy of topics. And so we have a variety of topics under K-12, KT assessment again funding and acquisition because it's also applicable for this category and this age range as well. The IT process, inclusion, so AT resources, and options and strategies for in the inclusion setting, LEA/SEA capacity building, so this is going to be for local education agencies, not likely for the families you work with. Online and blended learning, pre-service preparation, again not likely going to be appropriate for families you work with. So this is showing results across all audineces. This is not specific to a family audience. This is more specific to the areas of K-12 all areas. If you're looking specifically for resources for families, you might be interested in this category Family and Student Support. And so under there, there are valuable resources in advocacy and awareness, cultural context, family support organizations, family support, funding and acquisition, and technology tools. And then we have other categories again such as transition which you'll likely find a lot of appropriate information for families you work with there, and then state and local leaders. So if you work with professionals, these may be resources that you direct them towards.

- Okay great overview. So I'm going to click right here, so we're at the library main page and I'm just going to click on the search without entering any filters. And it might be useful to know that then that takes you to the full library, 1174 resources. And then we can go from there and I want to talk over about the bar on the side to the right, that is always there so you can enter filtered terms, but before you do that, it might be a good idea to go down and look at the other filters that are available. So starting with the audience, we can see here, we can click family support organizations. And it does do an immediate filter as soon as you click a box filtering out. . So just by clicking the family support organizations, parents and family members, it's now taking it down to 694 resources. And then below that is Resource Type, so that's really helpful if you know you want something to read or you know your want a webinar. So I'm gonna click Articles, Ebook, Infographic and then that has taken us down to 259 resources. And then the next section is Produced By who the organization was that produced the resource. And then lastly is the Language. So I can click just English and that takes me to 237 resources or alternatively if I am working with a family where English is the second language and I can just select Spanish and just see the resources that are available in Spanish. Here you see there are 14. Then I could then add Webinar and Video and then Spanish then there's 18 so I might wanna see everything that's available in Spanish. So then I'm gonna go back up here, go to the Full Library again, hit search and then I'm going to enter a specific term. Up here I will put and put it there Autism as my term and hit enter. And that takes me to 35 resources. So now this has everything that is appropriate for Family Support Organizations and Family Memebers, Audience and then all kinds of Resources and no Language is . And what did I, see that worked, 35. So I think that gives you a pretty good overview of how to navigate and find the resources on the Library. I do want to just go to one of these. Here we go, AT Support for Autism App Matrix. So clicking on that takes you to the Description page which has a brief description that gives you a little more information so you know whether you want to click through and open this document. And then, so I'm gonna click on that, and it opens the pdf, and see that document. Okay so that is the CTD website and especially the library resources and webinars and online courses. Now I'm gonna go back to PowerPoint. There we go.

Okay so as I mention earlier there's also ways to connect with CTD and other organizations in order to gain information and access resources First being their Twitter. CTD you can see here on the screen, CTD Institute's Twitter account, something that you can follow. You can subscribe for CTD updates by email. You can send questions or comments directly to CTD at there email address. And as we mentioned a little bit before that you can register for a free account, a free CTD account by clicking on the Register button and that will also give you access to login for webinars and courses. Okay, so hopefully we have helped you to become excited about all of the resources available on the CTD website. We have been developing and working on a binder of resources that is a collection of resources from CTD website but put together in a way that kind of leads you through learning about assistive technology and implementation when working with the families And so there's two versions. There's a Print version and a Digital version. To get started with the binder, we had sent out a needs assessment to learn about what are helpful ways to provide resources to the centers, like where you're at. And we also have done different focus groups to help us along the way provide direction for the needs assessment and then reviewing the content of what is in the binder and reviewing the usibilities of the print binder and the navigation of it and the review of the electronic binder and how to navigate through the electronic binder And so currently it's going through an editing process. There are many different hands to edit the document or the binder. And our goal then is to be providing this to you by the end of September. So the intended use of this is for your learning and building a foundational knowledge of assisted technology so that as your working with families you feel comfortable with the topics and with the resources available and how and where to find additional information to share with families. We also have the articles available within the binder for a quick, easy printing of individual articles to share. So the intention is not to take the full binder and to distribute that to families but to work with the families through the binder and walk through the binder with families and to share individual resources that are applicable to families at that moment in time, that they're needing the information. And also to point families toward the CTD website for more information.

So we're going to walk you through the Print version of the binder to show you the layout and how its been organized So this again, this is a draft version so there are some more edits happening to the binder. In the front page there will be an additional letter on top of it but this is also a How to Use This Guide. So when you receive this later, there will be a, you can refer to this for more information, how to use the guide we'll be covering this now but this could be helpful to have a written review reminder. There is a Table of Contents listing our areas of information. And so we have here, What is Assisted Technologies. So foundational information on what assisted technology is, the definitions of it, some examples. Legislation and Advocacy for assisted technologies and assisted technology for ages first to grade 12. Assisted technology for transition age and young adult. Finding and Funding Assisted Technology and then Glossaries and Additional Other Resources. So those are the main categories and within the main categories, we have subcategories. And you'll notice some of these subcategories repeat themselves based on the information put it in that category. And so these are color coded. The subcategories are color coded. So the Print resources are in red color. The Additional resources which are not printed, these are linked to finding the information on the CDT website and these are blue tabs, you'll find them in the blue tab. And then there are Spanish language resources. So if you're working with a family that speaks Spanish then you can find resources in the yellow tab. And then some of these categories, such as Assisted Technology for Ages are-- Sorry, for Legislation and Advocacy and then Finding and Funding there is a tab and a place for you to add Local Information. So this is information specific to your area. And so then you can print and include those within those pink tabs. And so the main categories are white tabs with a label and then the subcategories, as I had mentioned they are all colored tabs. So again if you're working with a family that speaks Spanish then you can look for all of the yellow tabs all within the binder.

So we're gonna look through this a little bit more here. I know you may not be able to read the specific areas but this might give you a little bit more introduction to what we've got. So every section has not only a tab that tells you where it is but it also has a cover page and that cover page gives a brief overview of that topic area. So this is the What is Assistive Technology, you know, a basic introduction to assistive technology. And then there is a list of what is printed that is immediately following that. Slide it over a little bit more. Little closer, there we go. And so, yeah, a brief description and then as Tara will talk about in a little bit, there are links to finding the document on the CTD website and that will be accessible through the electronic version of the binder. So then each resource that is printed has a cover page as well. Looks like this with the blue bars. So here's the AT Fact Sheet, Assistive Technology 101. And then the next one is Assistive Technology Solutions. So this one has a lot of helpful pictures. And so you can see how that one is. And then next we have a list of additional recommended resources. So things that were not printed and put in the binder but things that maybe, like the first one you can see it's the course that I reference when we were on the website and a couple videos. So some useful things that we are suggesting. And then the Spanish language resources. The first one is printed and is included here. The second one is a video. But then you can see here's the Spanish language resource and it is actually the same document that we just saw with all the pictures and it is translated into Spanish. So then moving on to Legislation and Advocacy. This is an area that we got feedback that would be really helpful for family centers to have some information handy to go to. And here you see these are the resources that are printed and included. And it's good to note that some of quite a few of the resources are actually quite short, like thathinkt this is a 504 flowchart handout, real clear, real helpful, really easy to just pull out and copy if that's something you want to share with the family, conversations about including assistive technology again, you know, that was four pages. So helpful information. And so those are all the Advocacy and Legislation documents. Some additional resources. The first one is a PowerPoint. And then we've got a website and a video. And a section for you to add relevant information that is specific to your location, state legislations, local advocacy organizations.

Next is AT for ages birth to grade 12. This is probably the largest section of the binder. We have, lets see, several pages a couple pages of resources that are printed and included and they are broken down into the basic intro information and then the IFSP process and the IEP process and then some information specific to choosing AT for your student. So again you see some very nice succinct documents that could be easy to reproduce for a family. Additional resources. This one is a couple pages, as well. Things that are easy to access of the CDT website some are a little longer. I see 57 pages 60 pages so nothing we wanted to press but things that might be useful to you in your work. And then Spanish language resources. It looks like there are four documents that are printed. Transition age so for high school students, transitioning to co-secondary activities colleges, jobs, independent living. Several printed resources here. And then additional resources, like video and a couple other documents. And then the finish language resource is a video. Then finding and funding the technology. It's an important topic for many families or if it comes up in your work with them. So we've got a couple print resources here. Assistive Technology for Students with Disabilities; a Closer Look at Acquisition and Funding. And the other one is One Day Assistive Technology. Quite a number of additional resources here. Speaking of that. And then again a space to put information specific to your area, your state or your region for funding resources. And then getting to the back, we're now at the Glossaries. This actually contains three glossaries. The first two are in English and the third is a Spanish glossary. So the first one is a short, look up glossary with acronyms and some of the most commonly used terms that parents will come across in the process of special education and looking at assistive technology. So this is really handy for those acronyms. They might need to know going into an IEP meeting. And the second one is a fuller, comprehensive assistive technology glossary. And it looks like it is 26 25 pages. So in this one we intended to put pretty much every term, not every term, but many, many terms that families may come across or need to be familiar with and working with the school and getting support for their child. So that's that.

And then we've got a Spanish language resource which is a glossary of assistive technology for transitioning. So this is a nice document that has some of the same terms in it and it is in Spanish. The English term in parenthesis. Then the last thing is Other Resources and this is organizations with resources on assistive technology. So CTD pacer and then other resources other organizations and a brief explanation and then a link to where you can find the websites. And that is the binder. And so now I think we're gonna switch over and look at and talk about the electronic version of the binder. So the electronic version of the binder does not have all of the resources printed out but the value is in the live links that you can click on and go straight to the resource on the CTD website rather than having to type in the web address or do a search on the title of the item. So here we see this, the title cover of the guide and then here is how to use this guide. And here are the Table of Contents though you might notice it looks the same but our edited version, our final version will have live links that are clickable. So if you want to say navigate to the Assistive Technology for Transition Aged Youth and Young Adult section you could click on this and go straight to that section rather than having to go all the way down to find it. That would be a really helpful way to quickly navigate. And so here we see under Print resources we're in the AT, one of AT's sections, here is the live link that you can click on to go to the page that has the resource on it. And so this is the short description on the CTD website. This resource and then here the downloadable esource link that we click on to download what looks like it's a pdf. And so as we navigate through, another option and way to navigate through this pdf document, if you're using Adobe as the viewer, is if you are for example towards the end of the document and you want to go back up to the Table of Contents quickly rather than scrolling we can type in the page number, hit return and then we can quickly navigate back up to the beginning of the document, the Table of Content. To then further move around and navigate through other sections that you're interested in either learning more about or sharing resources with the families that you are working with. Again this is a draft version and the individual articles are not viewable here but the description is and the link to go to that item whether it's the PowerPoint video or a readable pdf document. Another helplfull thing to note, as you're going through and taking in these resources is there is listed the amount of minutes how long it is or the amount and or the amount of minutes it would take to then learn about that resource. So if we here's one that is the printed document. You can see how many pages it is and then how minutes is estimated to be required to read through and to learn that material. So that can be helpful knowing how long that particular piece of learning information is. So again it's a draft document. And as I mentioned earlier, we're hoping to have these delivered to you by the end of September. And we're just finishing up the final edit to both of these, the print version and the electronic version and we are happy to share these with you and hoping that it's very helpful to you in your work. And we encourage you to share the CTD website resources others. The website is listed there. It's And to create a new account, that can be helpful to register to attend the webinars and the Ecourses. And also sign up for emails, to receive email notifications and newsletters of upcoming events through the CTD website. So again if you have questions or comments we encourage you to email at CTD@fhi360.organd we'd be happy to hear from you and answer any questions you have. And again thank you for your time and for learning about CTD and we're excited to share these resources with you.

- Thank you.