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Teacher Newsmagazine Volume 18, Number 2, October 2005

SET-BC: Special Education Technology–British Columbia and the Online Learning Centre

SET-BC is a B.C. Ministry of Education Provincial Resource Program established to assist school districts in educating students whose access to the curriculum is restricted primarily because of autism, physical disability, or visual impairment. Through partnerships with the school districts, SET-BC lends assistive technologies—reading, writing, access, and communication tools—to enable students’ participation in educational activities. SET-BC also provides the training for students and their teams in the use of those technologies.

SET-BC’s goal is to create student opportunities through the use of assistive technology. Assistive technology (AT) can provide personalized, personal productivity tools for students with AT solutions ranging from access to word processing for a student with fine motor control, to screen readers for students who are blind or visually impaired, to switch access for a student who has limited or no use of their hands, to content enhanced with picture symbols for students’ with emerging literacy and/or communication skills.

In 2003, SET-BC developed the online Learning and Conference Centre to expand training, professional development, and resource collections for educators of students with special needs. Training modules feature streaming audio-video web casts, technology-specific narrated demonstrations, and user tutorials.

The SET-BC web site, at www.setbc.org, houses resources to support the educational activities of students with special needs. Be sure to visit the learning centre for a bounty of resources, tutorials, and presentations, and to learn about SET-BC services and student stories.

Check out the accessible bookscollection in the main library.

Don’t miss pictureSet—a valuable resource for educators. School teams, families, and community programs benefit from the opportunity to search the pictureSET database to download ready-made resources for picture-symbol-based visual schedule, behaviour, and communication supports. The collection is growing; it includes over 1,000 files. pictureSET topic areas include community, health, holidays, home, mall, and school activities.

Find out more about the Provincial Software Acquisition Program (PSAP). Many schools have taken advantage of the program to acquire software to address the reading and writing, numeracy, and communication needs of all students. More than 5,000 titles are now in B.C. schools!

For further information, contact Constance McAvoy, SET-BC resources and projects co-ordinator, cmcavoy@setbc.org, or e-mail SET-BC info@setbc.org.



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