Several programs in West Virginia offer trainings related to assistive technology. The following provides a brief description of those trainings.
A Vision Rehabilitation Therapist is available to instruct persons with vision impairments in the use of compensatory skills that will enable them to live safe, productive and independent lives. Specific areas of instruction can include: communication skills, personal management, home management, daily living, leisure and recreation, medical management and psycho-social aspects of blindness and low vision. For more information, visit www.cwab.org or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The West Virginia Assistive Technology System (WVATS) offers a variety of trainings for individuals, caregivers, school systems, businesses and community organizations. WVATS also arranges vendor demonstrations of specific devices. For more information, call 800-841-8436.
The Fundamentals of Assistive Technology: This hands-on interactive training is designed to give participants a basic understanding of assistive technology, assistive technology services, funding and methods for obtaining assistive technology. Participants are introduced to both low-tech and high-tech assistive devices.
Computer Access Assessment Technology Institute: The primary purpose of this course is to train motivated, computer-literate individuals to give computer access assessments (CAA) to persons with disabilities. Attendees learn to identify hardware, peripherals and software that would best fit a person's special needs on an individual basis. The course addresses the needs of both adults and children.
Disability Awareness and Sensitivity Training: This training is designed to increase awareness about a variety of disabilities and discusses Person First Language and how to provide appropriate accommodations.
Assistive Technology Training - WorkForce WV: This training was developed specifically for the WorkForce WV Career Centers to train staff on accesible computer equipment in the Centers. This training is available to WorkForce staff, or can be altered to meet the needs of any group needing training on specific assistive technology for computers.
Specialized Trainings: WVATS can customize trainings to meet the needs of a school, business or other organization. Specific needs can be addressed in a variety of assistive device and service areas such as vision, hearing, cognition or mobility devices for children, youth, adults or seniors.
Universal Design in Education: Application of Universal Design can help ensure a variety of learning styles and needs are being met. This training introduces individuals to the concept of universal design and gives practical ways to apply the principles to classrooms and school work.
Web Site Accessibility: WVATS can provide training on how to check web sites for accessibility by using the Accessible Information Solutions (AIS) Web Accessibility Toolbar. Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act requires that electronic and information technology developed, procured, maintained or used by the Federal government be accessible to people with disabilities.
Universal Design in Housing: This training includes information on the history of Universal Design (UD) and how the seven principles of UD translate into practical features for a home. Using the principles of UD in the construction and modification of living environments can help create homes that are useable, marketable and accessible.
West Virginia AgrAbility: Trainings are available to farmers, educators and other groups on a wide variety of topics, including farm-related assistive technology, tractor modifications and ergonomic tools for farmers with physical limitations. AgrAbility also offers trainings for occupational and physical therapists that cover topics related to clinical assessment and methods of on-farm accommodation. All trainings can be tailored to varying lengths and levels of detail. For more information, call 800-841-8436 or e-mail email@example.com.
Green Thumbs, Healthy Joints: Groups interested in learning more about accessible garden design or ergonomic and assistive gardening tools can arrange for a workshop in their community. For more information, call 800-841-8436 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Taking Charge of Your Health and Safety: Trainings are available for senior centers and other senior groups on various health-related topics, including arthritis, heart health, diabetes, physical activity, healthy eating and fall prevention. Trainings are available in Berkeley, Boone, Braxton, Cabell, Greenbrier, Hardy, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson, Kanawha, Marion, Marshall, McDowell, Monongalia, Summers and Wirt counties. For more information, call 800-841-8436 or e-mail email@example.com.
Augmentative Communication: Easter Seals offers individuals access to a complete assistive technology and augmentative communication lab, and offers community screenings and school consultations on request.
Speech Therapy: Parents and caregivers are trained in activities and techniques, which may include sign-language, to encourage development outside of the therapy sessions.
For more information, call Easter Seals at 800-677-1390.
Independent Living Skills Training: This training consists of skills needed by an individual to live independently in one's environment. This training usually occurs in one's own home, but may occur anywhere. Staff may accompany a person in the community to gain skills necessary to live independently. If a person is physically unable to perform a needed task, the staff will work with that individual to develop the best solution to perform that task, including use of assistive technology. For more information, call:
Mountain State Centers for Independent Living (MTSTCIL)
Northern West Virginia Centers for Independent Living (NWVCIL)
Appalachian Centers for Independent Living (NWVCIL)
The Seeing Hand Association: The Seeing Hand offers training in computer use and access technology. With a variety of available access technology products, clients are able to test, select and learn. A general plan of training exists; however, an individualized plan is developed for each client and job tasks are simulated when possible. While enrolled, clients are encouraged to use the Center's computer equipment based on availability. For more information, call: 304-232-4810 or visit www.seeinghandassociation.com.
Assistive Technology for Infants and Toddlers: One-day videoconference training is held in several locations around the state on supporting infants and toddlers in participating in home and community activities by adapting and modifying their environments. The training focuses on no-tech and low-tech modifications. For more information, call: 800-642-9704.
The WVCDHH provides very specific trainings throughout the year. For more information, and to see trainings that are being offered, visit www.wvdhhr.org/wvcdhh or call 866-461-3578.
WV Parent-Educator Resource Center (PERC) Project: PERCs provide information, resources and training for parents on important issues such as parenting skills, problem solving, educational planning for their child, assistive technology, behavior management, home learning activities and other topics to strengthen home-to-school partnerships. For more information, call your local Parent Educator Resource Center or the state team at 800-642-8541.
Camp Gizmo: A five-day hands-on camp where parents, professionals and students learn how assistive technology can help young children (birth - 8 years) with significant and multiple developmental needs. A limited number of 'focus' children are accepted and assigned a team of professionals who help families identify and apply new strategies for solving their multiple assistive technology needs. For more information, call Alyson Edwards, WVECTCR, 888-983-2827 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Office of Special Programs (OSP): OSP offers several online training sessions for educators on its website at wvde.state.wv.us/ose/index.html.
WV Parent-Educator Resource Center (PERC) Project: This statewide program provides in-home services to West Virginians 55 and older with visual impairments. VISIONS offers skills training and assistive technology that empowers seniors to become more independent in: activities of daily living, home management, orientation and mobility, communication skills, guidance and counseling to help in adjusting to decreased vision. For more information, call 800-642-3021.
Training for Blind and Visually Impaired Individuals: The Life Skills Unit for the Blind, located at the West Virginia Rehabilitation Center, provides individualized training in a variety of pre-vocational and vocational areas. Training includes orientation and mobility, adaptive communication, domestic arts, adaptive activities of daily living, computer training with access technology and braille. Program content is customized to meet the specific needs of each student. For more information, call 800-642-8207.
Training for Deaf and Hard of Hearing: Specialized counselors assist clients with significant hearing losses with rehabilitation services such as counseling and guidance, vocational guidance, assessment and training. Counselors also provide community education and technical assistance to entities involved with job training, job placement and employment of persons who are deaf and hard of hearing. For more information, call Barbara King at 304-766-4965 (Voice/TDD) or e-mail Barbara.email@example.com.
WVPTI is a grassroots parent training center that provides trainings, including trainings on assistive technology for students. Stipends to reimburse gas mileage and childcare are available for families to attend trainings. For more information, call 800-281-1436 or visit www.wvpti.org.
Located on the eighth floor of Allen Hall on the University's Evansdale campus, the Center conducts clinics that include augmentative communication evaluations and training. For more information, call 304-293-6817 or visit www.wvu.edu/~speechpa.
Job Accommodation Network (JAN): JAN provides training opportunities to enable users to improve their knowledge and skills about job accommodations. The JAN Accommodation and Compliance Series provides Web casts that bring live training to the user's computer several times a year. The JAN Presentation Library provides Internet-based streaming and downloadable videos and Powerpoint shows. JAN provides information briefs on a wide variety of disabilities and the accommodations that might be appropriate. For more information, call: 800-526-7234 or visit www.jan.wvu.edu.
Most assistive technology vendors offer individual, group or distance training on their products.
West Virginia Assistive Technology System
Center for Excellence in Disabilities at West Virginia University
959 Hartman Run Road
Morgantown, WV 26505
Printed materials are available in Braille, electronic format, cassette tape and large print.