So I really like these recordings for a couple of reasons. First, it breaks up the reading and secondly it gives me the opportunity to share some personal examples related to the material presented on the slide. It gives the lecture like quality to this online course. So when you click on these little recordings you will either get my voice or that of Dr. Suzanne Robinson. As we collaborate on the writing and format of this course, we often use the same materials. This way you will get more than one instructor perspective in some of the power points. Team teaching that benefits everyone! On that note, I am going to let you continue reading through the intro powerpoint. I am very excited to start this new semester and get to know all of you!
Welcome to sped 401
First let me just say…
I am so very excited to be teaching this course!Why, you ask? Because I am heavily involved in education and have been working in the field of autism for years, and I love what I do!Working with children with special needs is why I got into the field of education. It is why I went to graduate school to get my Masters in Educational Counseling. It is why I am now an instructor here at CSUF.
Aside from the obvious fact that we will not be meeting face-to- face in a classroom, we still will be meeting on a regular basis by logging onto the course Titanium site.You will be required to log in a minimum of 2x per week, with the first login being as early in the week as possible.Plan on allocating 3-6 hours each week. Some of you may even need more time than that, depending on your work habits, prior knowledge, reading speed, etc. In addition, some weeks will require more time due to special assignments, such as studying for an exam or writing a paper.
So, with that said, you can see that online classes offer this trade-off… they are generally more work but you get to decide when that work is done- whether that be in the break room during lunch or at 3 am in your pajamas!In addition to flexibility, online classes have several other benefits. They may offer a wider variety of activities and opportunities to demonstrate your learning, allow for greater student-to-student interaction & collaboration, and facilitate better discussions, among other things.
If you are new to online learning, you may find it quite tricky at first but you will soon get the hang of it.Remember this… success in an online class absolutely requires active participation, discussion, and commitment by all because each member of the class is crucial to the extent to which the learning takes place. This means that you will need a great deal of self-discipline (yikes!) to stay on top of the content as well as the deadlines.Simply put, you can’t dialogue about material you haven’t read and no one will be around to remind you to do your work!
We will be covering a wide range of topics related to autism, however, our main focus will be on best practices for educating students with autism at the early intervention, preschool, and k-12 levels. Additionally, you will walk away with a plethora of resources to use as a professional in the field and to share with parents and others.Might I add a suggestion at this juncture? Start an Autism notebook for yourself. There is a ton of good information in this course and though you may not remember every bit, it will be handy to have a quick reference guide to look back at and pull from in the future as you need it!
If you are someone who comes to this Intro class with extensive experience, you may find some of the modules particularly easy and wish for more information. In such cases, I recommend that you read all the articles & resources provided, and enrich your experience by doing additional web searching/research on the topic as desired. On the other hand, if you are someone who comes to this class with very limited experience, you may find some of the modules particularly challenging and too much information. With you in mind, I have limited the amount of assigned journal articles and have tailored my PowerPoints.Whatever your situation, I think you will learn some valuable information and walk away with some great resources that will contribute to your overall professional development.
When I log onto the course TITANIUM site at the beginning of each week, what do I do? Where do I go? What can I expect on a weekly basis? The Topics for each week are organized in the center of the course page. Each weekly topic box contains specific directions and other materials that you will need including:1. Assigned readings2. PowerPoint + audio/video3. Discussion & Activities 4. Upcoming assignment info and 5. Forum Links
•A quick note about thosePowerPoint presentations Imentioned in the last slide:Sometimes you will see a little icon that looks like this. (If you donot see it, don’t worry. Depending on the software you arerunning you may not have the option of whether or not to click onthem. I’ll explain in a second)This is the Audio part!This icon means there is a recorded message imbedded in theppt. and you will need to be in Slide Show view in order to hearthese messages.If you do not see them, they will play automatically for you as youadvance you slides in slide show view, just be sure to have yourvolume up! These videos are also captioned in the presenternotes for you to read.Now go ahead and click on the ones above (or advance your
A Little About Your Instructor For years I had the opportunity to work with a non-profit organization based in Los Angeles supervising behavior therapists. We worked primarily with kiddos with Autism in the K-12 setting; but we also had clients with ADHD, Mild and Moderate LD, and even consulted for typical kids with behavioral problems stemming from their social and home environments. This position especially opened my eyes to the wide spectrum of this disability, and how so many different influences help determine the success of their individual programs. I also have had the opportunity to combine my counseling background (Master of Science from the University of La Verne here in So. Cal) with special education through running social skills and parent support groups for families of kiddos with Autism throughout the years. I earned a Bachelor of Applied Science in Psychology with a research emphasis from my hometown University of Minnesota - Duluth. The strong influence of the importance of research in social science and psychology is ingrained in me after working many years under my mentor (Dr. Eugene Grossman) as a TA for applied statistics. You will see this influence throughout this course :) More recently I have expanded my interests to job training programs for individuals with disabilities through the non-profit organization Goodwill of Orange County. 10
You will have one week (sometimes two) to complete the topics.Each topic will become available on the first day of the week, Sunday, and be due the following Sunday at midnight. However, certain activities within the topic may have earlier deadlines so read the directions carefully.Also, be sure that you visit the topic box as early in the week as possible so that you can allocate your time appropriately.
I will be very available on the weekdays, checking email & our course site at least once per day.If you have a question related to the course then you will go to the Q&A forum. This “Q&A” is where you will post (and I or your peers will answer) any and all questions you have related to the class. Please do not use my email unless you need to communicate with me confidentially.
Since we won’t be together in the same space at the same time, we must find an alternate way of dialoguing with one another- whether that be asking & answering questions, exchanging ideas, debating hot topics, offering support, or whatever the case may be. The best way to do this dialoguing in an online class, at least asynchronously (not in real time), is by utilizing the Discussion Forums. As such, we will be using this nifty little feature very, very regularly. In fact, almost every topic will include participation in at least one discussion forum.
You will be able to access the listed forums by clicking on the “Forums” button (upper right menu box).Most of the forums will require your participation, but some will be join-in-on-the-fun-if-you-want-to.Also, you will notice that some of these forums will run actively throughout the course (e.g., the Q&A forum will stay available and “in use” the whole semester), while others will only be used during a specific week.
Some vocabulary terms to know related to the Forums. The small group: when you are divided into small groups, each group will have its own forum. Forums: individual areas set up for each separate discussion (one for Q&A, one for Introductions, etc.).Discussion Prompts: questions or scenarios the instructor will pose to start (prompt) a discussion.Threads: new or original posts made within the forum, in response to the discussion prompt. You will start a thread by clicking “add a new topic” within the forum. Replies: posts made in response to a peer’s thread (it’s like responding to someone’s email). Threads + Replies = Discussion!
You will be reading the coolest little book ever, Overcoming Autism. It was on the best seller list! Did you see it featured at Barnes & Noble? (okay so that doesn’t always mean anything, but this does…) It was co-written by a leading professional in the field of autism, Dr. Lynn Koegel, and a parent of a son with autism, Claire LaZebnik. This book was chosen because it is such a great read, and so practical. It discusses research-based strategies in such a way that you feel as if you are speaking to the parent or teacher next door. In fact, it is so user-friendly, you could loan this book out to your families when you’re done. And I encourage you to do so!
In addition to Overcoming Autism, you will be assigned to review various journal articles. (Here we go with that research!) I will either post the article itself or give you the references and you will need to collect the articles via the CSUF library databases which you can access through your CSUF portal.If you do not know how to do that, please contact a librarian for assistance.
1. Designing a Brochure for parents & professionals 2. Completing an Intervention Review 3. Completing 2 Case StudiesPlease review the course requirements located in the syllabus for additional information (click on the “Syllabus” menu button). Also, specific directions and grading rubrics are provided within “Assignment Info”.
o Discussing in small groups o Contributing to course wiki pages o Blogging o Surfing the web for videos and resourceso Surfing the library databases for journal articles o Completing self-assessment quizzes Oh boy, what fun! I know you can hardly wait to get started! (me, too!)
For the brochure, I will accept it up to one week late, with a 10% deduction. It will not be accepted after one week. For all other assignments and activities (weekly module work, quiz’s, and the Intervention Review), late work is not accepted. In other words, work posted/submitted after the deadline will receive a zero. The only exceptions include extenuating circumstances (death of family member, hospitalization). I must be contacted immediately and documentation must be provided.
There are a number of ways to track assignments and deadlines, aside from the syllabus itself… Click on the following menu buttons: “Assignment Info” “Course Calendar” & “Topics” …Yes, I have included many ways for you to keep yourself on track!
You will have quite a bit, especially with your classmates. This course is set up to facilitate student-to-student learning. That means you will spend most of your time dialoguing and collaborating with one another. These opportunities will come primarily via the Discussion Boards.Basically, while you all go for the gold, I put on the hat that reads “World’s Best Coach”
Aaah, I’m glad you asked this very important Q.Rule #1…Expect technical difficulties. Do not wait until the last minute to complete your work because inevitably that is when TITANIUM will go down or the computer will crash.Rule #2…Do not expect me to fix the technical difficulty. You must contact IT support immediately for assistance. Please review the technical assistance info in the syllabus or locate the “Help!” section at the very bottom of the main course page.
Before I sign off, I should mention that our course site is set up to track when and if you have accessed all the information for each unit. Students who access the info and complete the assignments will receive credit for the class session.A little creepy and big-brother-ish, I know, but I want you to get those points for being an active participant, and documenting your work is just good practice!
While we can’t “see” each other, I hope that we can get acquainted with one another quickly, and become a tight-knit, enthusiastic on-line learning community.I look forward to reading about your many & varied perspectives, experiences, and reactions to what we are learning & discussing each week. All in all, I will do my best to make this class as enjoyable as it can be!