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Donna Case

PhD, OTL

Donna Case, PhD, OTL, began her work with assistive technology more than 30 years ago when working with adults with significant multiple disabilities who had been removed from Michigan's State Institutions. She received a master's degree in Interdisciplinary Technology from Eastern Michigan University to facilitate her students' ability to interact in meaningful ways with their environments and community. She received an Individual Interdisciplinary PhD in Industrial Engineering and Occupational Therapy, looking at improving employment options for individuals with severe disabilities using assistive technology. Donna has been teaching courses in assistive technology to occupational therapy, engineering, and special education students for more than twenty years. She has written chapters and articles on assistive technology for a variety of publications.

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Assistive Technology for Individuals with Specific Impairments

Presented by Donna Case, PhD, OTL

Assistive Technology for Individuals with Specific Impairments

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Individuals with disabilities want to live meaningful and independent lives that include participation in school, home, and community environments. Individuals with specific impairments, such as hearing, visual, or cognition, may experience barriers to access within various domains and environments. Assistive technology allows individuals with these impairments to achieve meaning and active participation in their lives. This course will provide an overview of general considerations for assistive technologies available for individuals with visual, hearing, or cognitive impairments as well as resources for determining assistive technologies for these individuals.

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Assistive Technology for Play and Leisure

Presented by Donna Case, PhD, OTL

Assistive Technology for Play and Leisure

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Piaget stated that "play is the work of children." Through play, a child learns to explore, develop, and master physical and social skills that form the foundation for future academic and life skills. Children with disabilities face many barriers to play. This lack of play leads to difficulties with academic and lifelong skills. Assistive technology allows children and adults with disabilities to engage in play or leisure individually and with others. This course will present an overview of the components that play facilitates, how assistive technology facilitates individuals with disabilities to participate in play or leisure, and what barriers individuals with disabilities may experience related to play and leisure and how assistive technology can help remove those barriers.

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Home and Community Assistive Technology

Presented by Donna Case, PhD, OTL

Home and Community Assistive Technology

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Individuals with disabilities want to live and participate in their own homes and communities. Too often, individuals with disabilities live in homes and communities that lack accessibility. These barriers prevent the individual from being independent and experiencing meaning in their life. Application of universal design concepts and use of assistive technology for the home and community facilitates meaningful participation in these areas. This course will present an overview of universal design concepts as they relate to home and community, technologies for home and community, and transportation barriers and solutions.

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Communication Assistive Technology

Presented by Donna Case, PhD, OTL

Communication Assistive Technology

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Many individuals with disabilities experience social and community isolation. These individuals may experience difficulties in communicating with others. For some individuals with disabilities, communicating their wishes and needs gives them meaning. Communication can be verbal or written and is essential in sharing what an individual knows or wishes to know. This course will present an overview of communication and written exchange of information for individuals with disabilities, including augmentative and alternative communication, adaptions currently available through computer or tablet systems, and add-on apps or programs to facilitate various forms of communication.

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Assistive Technology Overview

Presented by Donna Case, PhD, OTL

Assistive Technology Overview

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What is assistive technology? It is a broad range of devices, services, strategies, and practices that ameliorate the problems faced by individuals who have disabilities (Cooke and Polgar, 2015). Or, as defined by federal law, assistive technology encompasses any kind of process, system, or equipment that maintains or improves the capabilities of people with disabilities of any kind: physical or cognitive. This course will address determination of appropriate technology as it relates to the strengths and weaknesses of the individual, the specific task required, the environment(s) in which it will be used, and the tools required to remove specific barrier(s) to an individual's participation in meaningful occupations.

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Assistive Technology Teams, Funding, and Switch Access

Presented by Donna Case, PhD, OTL

Assistive Technology Teams, Funding, and Switch Access

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Assistive technology can allow individuals with disabilities to find meaning and participate in their homes and communities. There are many factors that impact an individual with a disability successfully implementing that technology. The best assistive technology must be accessible to the individual with a disability, and without it, the technology and desired outcomes remain out of reach. This course will address how to develop an assistive technology team, possible funding sources for assistive technology, the components that should be considered for an individual to access assistive technology, and how to determine an individual's access to the assistive technology.

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