8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.
9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Enhancing Communication and Learning in Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Jennifer Abramson is a speech-language pathologist at Boston Children’s Hospital, where she works in the Autism Language Program and the Augmentative Communication Program. Jennifer is a co-author of the book: Enhancing Communication in Individuals with Autism: A Guide to the Visual Immersion System.
She will illustrate methods used in the "Visual Immersion System", the clinical model developed in the Autism Language Program at Boston Children’s Hospital intended to expand receptive and expressive language development. Specifically, there will be a discussion regarding the communicative operations outlined in the Autism Language Program including protesting, requesting, commenting/labeling, following and giving directives, asking and answering questions, as well as supporting transitions and social pragmatic skills.
It is intended to challenge audience members to think about visual supports in an expansive manner, far beyond simply requesting and protesting, and to use visual supports with individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Videos will be provided to illustrate implementation of strategies used within the Visual Immersion System.
11:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
John Costello will present the equipment that can be found in a modern AAC assessment center, explaining the necessary tools for working with persons with severe and multiple disabilities. A wide range of assistive technology will be presented, ranging from low-tech to high-tech solutions. He will also share some useful tips and tricks from his AAC practice.
11:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Product Demo: Tobii Communicators
Kaveh Vefagh and Magnus Sundelin from Tobii Dynavox will showcase the software solutions for AAC and the eye-controlled communicators.
Kaveh Vefagh is responsible for Europe, Middle East, South Asia, and Africa. He is passionate about bringing AAC and eyegaze technology to all corners of the world and to allow more people to fulfill their potential and live their lives to the fullest. Magnus Sundelin is responsible for Tobii Dynavox products in the Eastern and Central European region and Russia. This father of two is equally passionate about helping people through AAC.
11:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
Using Visual Support in Health Care to Enhance Patient - Provider Communication and Understanding
Dorothy Fraser, from Scotland, is a member of ISAAC BUILD committee, editor of Communication Support World Network newsletter and Senior Representative to Eastern and Central Europe for Central Coast Children’s Foundation, an American NGO. Her role within these organisations is to share information internationally to promote AAC awareness and use in emerging AAC nations.
This presentation will demonstrate low cost strategies and resources to support patient - provider communication and encourage patients, family members and advocates to be actively involved in preparing for medical encounters and rehabilitation.
12:15 p.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Video story: Eye gaze Communication in the Intensive Care Unit
Mirna Bobinac, Dr Med, works as anesthesiologist at the anesthesiology and intensive care clinic at Rijeka hospital. She will give a case study of a young patient who was a victim of a heavy car accident.
After a long recovery and multiple surgeries, three of them on upper and lower mandible, the patient returned to her normal life. Due to intermaxillary fixation and tracheotomy, she was unable to speak, and the cast on the right forearm prevented her from writing. Tobii Communicator was one of the ways of communicating with her for the entire three weeks.
12:30 p.m. - 12:45 p.m.
Soundbeam – music for rehabilitation and inclusion
Žarko Sebić works in the Milan Petrović School for elementary and higher education with a student dorm in Novi Sad. He will present a music workshop "Soundbeam" with special Soundbeam instruments intended for children with disabilities and people with disabilities. Soundbeam is a music system that, with the help of ultrasonic waves, enables creative music. The purpose of the workshop is to rehabilitate and educate this population through active participation in cultural life and their integration into the community. Workshop leaders are Žarko Sebić and Renata Koler.
2:15 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.
2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.
4:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
AAC Strategies in Early Intervention to Support Language Development
Aldona Mysakowska-Adamczyk has been speech and language therapist for nearly thirty years, almost twenty of which she dedicated to AAC, working with people of various ages. For the last ten years she has been working together with parents on supporting children’s communication and language development in early intervention program specialized in implementing AAC.
The literature on typical children’s language development strongly suggests that early experiences are critical for later language development. Appropriate AAC/AT devices and strategies support child’s learning about reasons to communicate (pragmatics), word meanings (semantics), word building (morphology), and sentence building (syntax).
With early access to AAC strategies and technologies, young children with significant communication disabilities will get a chance to build language and communication skills that they require to achieve their full potential and maximize outcomes.
4:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.
Mounting and Positioning of Assistive Technology Devices
Uli Ehlert is a managing director of the German company REHAdapt, one of the global leaders in the development of specialized mounting systems for assistive technology.
He will present the examples of best practice and various cases of using mounting systems for AT and AAC devices.
4:45 p.m. - 5:15 p.m.
Multimodal Approach for Encouraging Communication and Language for Children with Intellectual Disabilities
Complex communication needs are often part of the clinical features in children with intellectual difficulties . Communication and verbal expression problems range from the lack of verbal communication to the verbal communication intelligible to other people. In the clinical practice we are very often faced with prejudices, e.g. that the manual signs would disable the acquisition of speech, as well as with diminishing the role of graphic symbols or communication books.
In this presentation we will show several children with intellectual disabilities and the multimodal approach for adopting functional communication and language. The emphasis is also on the importance of integration of all the applied strategies into everyday life and establishing partner relationship with family. We will also give a brief presentation of the Faculty of Education and Rehabilitation Sciences Rehabilitation Center.
This presentation was prepared by Ana Marija Bohaček, Jasmina Ivšac Pavliša, Marina Milković, and Klara Popčević from the Faculty of Education and Rehabilitation Sciences, and Željka Car from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing.
5:30 p.m. - 5:45 p.m.
Software Solutions for Learning, Rehabilitation, and Communication
David Hofer has been working with the assistive technology for many years now. He is a director of the LIFETool non-profit organisation in Austria and of the LIFETool company, dedicated to the development of assistive technology and educational software.
David Hofer shall present their software packages that were developed primarily for children with developmental disabilities with a purpose to facilitate learning, rehabilitation, and communication.
5:45 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Video Story: Mali Dom – Zagreb
Martina Celizić, master of educational rehabilitation, is a head of the daily program activities at the daily center "Mali dom - Zagreb". Together with Diana Korunić, professor of speech therapy and pathology, she is a conductor of the education program: “Systems of substitute and augmentative communication in working with persons with multiple disabilities” that the institution provides as a part of the Mali dom - Zagreb educational center.
"Mali dom - Zagreb" is a city-owned institution that works as a daily center for persons with multiple disabilities until the age of 21. Mali dom – Zagreb carries out assessments and consultations, early interventions through support in families and in center, daily program activities, and activities of the Center for education. It currently provides services for about one hundred users through the above-mentioned programs.
6:00 p.m. - 6:15 p.m.
Video story: Goljak Education Center
Vesna Matijević Knez is a professor of educational rehabilitation – a teacher of typewriting and a teacher in the supplementary education and rehabilitation program in the Goljak educational center.
Through education of typewriting and rehabilitation programs conducted in Goljak center with students of 1st through 8th grade, the students, according to their needs and capabilities, and with the help of assistive technology, acquire competences for using computers. The students use these competences for their curricular duties and for creative writing and arts.
6:15 p.m. - 6:45 p.m.
Assistive Technology: From Assessment to Implementation
Nevena Ivković is an assistive technology technician. She works in the Milan Petrović School for elementary and higher education with a student dorm in Novi Sad. The Assistive Technoogy Service has been part of this school for ten years now.
In her presentation Nevena will try to share a part of the working experience of this team. She will show why it is so important to determine and consistently follow the procedures in the assessment process, when choosing the device, in user training, and in integration of assistive technology in the living and working environment of the user. She will talk about the cooperation with individuals, parents, and teachers, informing the public, education of experts, misconceptions on the assistive technology, and the difficulties confronted by the team.
6:45 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Video story: Special Hospital for the Protection of Children with Neurodevelopmental and Motor Difficulties
Ksenija Ena Hršak has been working as a master of education and rehabilitation sciences in Special Hospital for the Protection of Children with Neurodevelopmental and Motor Disorders in Zagreb.
She will present her past and current experience in implementation of assistive technologies for children with complex communication needs. In her presentation she will emphasize the importance of transdisciplinary approach in the assessment for the adequate AT device, focusing on child and parents.