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CSD faculty members share their expertise not only with students, but with clinicians and the public. We believe these websites and Outreach activities contribute to changes in everyday practices in our discipline. Some recent examples of outreach activities include:

Dr.Janice Light is a member of the Augmentative and Alternative Communication Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center (the AAC-RERC), a collaborative research group dedicated to the development of effective AAC technology, which is funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. The AAC-RERC website (www.aac-rerc.com) provides resources for learning and communication among individuals who use AAC, clinicians, educators, researchers, and the public. The site hosts webcasts on a variety of topics, some of which can be used to earn ASHA continuing education credits. For example, Dr. Light has produced a webcast titled Maximizing the Literacy Skills of Individuals who Require AAC.

Literacy Instruction for Individuals with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome and Other Disabilities
Dr. Janice Light, Distinguished Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders in the College of Health and Human Development and Dr. David McNaughton, Associate Professor of Special Education in the College of Education recently launched a Web site to provide speech language pathologists, teachers, and parents with strategies for teaching literacy skills to learners with special needs, especially learners with complex communication needs.

Early intervention for young children with autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, and other disabilities
Dr. Janice Light, Distinguished Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders in the College of Health and Human Development, Dr. Kathryn Drager, Associate Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders, and Jessica Currall, AAC Research and Outreach Coordinator, recently completed a website on early intervention to maximize the language and communication development of young children with complex communication needs. This website provides guidelines for early intervention to maximize the language and communication development of young children with complex communication needs.

Dr. Krista Wilkinson presented a series of three workshops for public school personnel serving children with special needs, entitled Working Toward a Shared Goal: Bridging Behavioral and Non-Behavioral Approaches to Solving Common Clinical/Educational Problems; Color Cuing in Visual Aids for Communication; and Assessing Categorization Skills in Individuals with Severe Intellectual Disability and Complex Communication Support Needs.

Dr. Carol Miller presented a workshop for the Central Intermediate Unit entitled Auditory Processing Disorder and Language Impairment: Issues in Assessment and Treatment, and has been invited to speak in March 2009 at a continuing education course entitled the Spectrum of Developmental Disabilities, sponsored by the Johns Hopkins University Department of Pediatrics, the Kennedy Krieger Institute, and the Kennedy Fellows Association. Her topic will be Developmental relationships between language and theory of mind.

Faculty Development

The Department of CSD supports faculty in improving their teaching skills in a number of ways. The Annual Department Retreat devotes a half day to discuss assessment in the classroom and individual faculty member's teaching and learning strategies; specific faculty meetings are dedicated to discussions about teaching and learning and pedagogical styles; new faculty hires are strongly encouraged to attend the Penn State Course on College Teaching (CELT); the Department encourages faculty to submit proposals for teaching innovation grants and provides release time and matching funds.