AT for Infants/Toddlers

Best Practices Links

This section includes references on evidenced-based practice for using assistive technology for young children with disabilities and their families. The TOTS-n-TECH research briefs provide a rationale and research to support the use of AT with very young children and directions for training needs of providers and families. The DEC-recommended practices offer a chapter on assistive technology that informs the reader about the basic principles of AT use with young children and where to go for further information. Standards specified in the chapter can be used as a springboard for formulating AT guidance in early intervention programs.

References

  1. AT, National Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (NECTAC)
    The National Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center provides support to State agencies in the area of Early Childhood education for children with disabilities based out of the University of North Carolina at Chapel HIll. The center has a very comprehensive Web site on many topics including AT with an emphasis on early learning. This site includes information on: AT overview, federal funding, definitions, state examples, EC projects, universal design, information and resources, and a bibliography. It lists additional Web sites to connect with that provide specific information on AT.

  2. Web Site of Dr. Cynthia Cress
    Cynthia Cress is featured in this section of the University of Nebraska's Web site on AAC. She has developed several tools for assessment and intervention planning that demonstrate links to best practice in naturalistic communication and participation in natural environments for young children and families. The site provides a series of presentations by Dr. Cynthia Cress on early AAC assessment and intervention.

  3. Symbols
    This site provides research articles on symbols; using symbols for communication with young children with different types of disabilities.

Reports

  1. TOTS-n-TECH, National Research Institute: Assistive Technology in Early Intervention
    The site provides research-based briefs on AT for infants and toddlers with disabilities. The research institute began in 2000 and is studying AT services and devices in terms of their use and prevalence for young children with disabilities.

  2. DEC Rx. Practices
    The DEC recommended practices has a chapter on assistive technology that informs the reader about the basic principles of AT use with young children and where to go for further information. Standards specified in the chapter can be used as a springboard for formulating AT guidance in early intervention programs. The book and workbook can be purchased from the Division on Early Childhood or from Sopris West Publishing Company.

Curriculum

  1. Let's Play
    This Web site is very user friendly and includes many practical applications of AT for young children. The project was sponsored by USDOE, Early Education Programs for Children with Disabilities, from 1998-2004 at the University of Buffalo, State University of New York, School of Public Health and Health Professions. The site includes play, selecting toys, universal design, AT, and resources.

Models

  1. AAC-RERC
    According to the description on the Web site, "The AAC-RERC conducts a comprehensive program of research, development, training, and dissemination activities that address the NIDRR priorities and seek to improve technologies for individuals who rely on augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) technologies." While the focus of the AAC-RERC includes persons of all ages, the sections on funding and report-writing to access AAC devices support advocacy by professionals and family members.

  2. Wisconsin Assistive Technology Initiative (WATI)
    WATI is a State of Wisconsin effort to provide training, materials and products on AT for children birth through 21 throughout the state. Their products include devices, curriculum, list of best practice sites among other useful information.

  3. Let's Play Presentations
    This Web site is very user friendly and includes many practical applications of AT for young children. The project was sponsored by USDOE, Early Education Programs for Children with Disabilities, from 1998-2004 at the University of Buffalo, State University of New York, School of Public Health and Health Professions. The site includes play, selecting toys, universal design, AT, and resources.


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