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Workshops and Trainings

Support for families, caregivers and professionals


Southwest Human Development offers training and technical assistance to families, caregivers and professionals to assist them in their work with children and adults with disabilities.

Below is a sample of the types of workshops and training opportunities available through the Assistive Technology Program at Southwest Human Development:

  • AAC Device Training
    We are proud to offer no cost training and technical assistance to families, caregivers, educators, therapists, and other professionals working with augmentative and alternative communication device users. Training occurs twice each month at different locations and is facilitated by assistive technology specialists, allowing families and professionals to get support on how to use the device and/or communication software that was recommended specifically for the AAC user. Topics are indicated by need of the attendees but can include overall set up of an Apple iPad as a communication device, programming and customizing a variety of communication apps, discussion related to AAC implementation in the users day-to-day settings, and conversations about vocabulary selection. Click here to request information about our upcoming AAC training sessions!
  • Balanced Literacy Club
    Designed to boost the literacy skills of individuals who depend on augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems. Learning to read and write are critical skills for all individuals in our society, but especially so for those who are unable to communicate verbally. Unfortunately, literacy levels in this population regularly fall well below those of same age peers – even those with similar intellectual capacity. The Balanced Literacy Club helps teachers learn how to take advantage of communication devices and special computer software to increase their student’s reading comprehension, written expression, and narrative skills. This club combines workshop instruction and hands-on technical assistance in the classroom.
  • Visual Strategies Project
    Helps school district teams learn how to use technology (especially communication devices and special computer programming) to increase their students' understanding of language. Many students, particularly those with autism, are able to show great improvement in language and literacy when provided with extra visual cues. Their good visual learning skills help compensate for their difficulties with auditory learning. This project combines workshop instruction and hands-on technical assistance in the classroom.
  • Assistive Technology Overview
    An introduction to assistive technology. Participants learn about, view, and explore technology designed to help individuals with disabilities accomplish educational, social and daily living activities.
  • Boardmaker® Software Level 1 and Level 2
    Boardmaker® software uses clip art of picture communication symbols, which are used in creating printed communication boards, device overlays, worksheets and schedules.
    • Level 1: Covers basic features of the Boardmaker® software program.
    • Level 2: Takes Boardmaker® skills to the next level by learning advanced features of this highly versatile tool.

Training Rates
Workshop and training rates vary depending on specific needs. While some of the workshops and trainings are offered at no cost, others have an hourly-based fee structure that begins at $120.00, with considerations given for large groups and extended workshops or trainings scheduled for four hours or more. The Assistive Technology Program is a DES/DDD and DES/Rehabilitation Services contracted provider and accepts purchase orders from school districts and other entities, as well as private pay.

For additional information about workshops and trainings,
please contact Tina Martin at (602) 633-8686 or tmartin@swhd.org