Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Monday, November 07, 2005

Access Technology Institute (ATI) offers Training for Assistive Tech Specialists

Interested in a career as an assistive technology specialist, or simply looking for a way to increase your computer knowledge? If this is the case, you'll need to become familiar with the variety of software applications and devices that people who are blind or visually impaired use to access computers and the internet. That's no small order, especially for those juggling the demands of a current job.

That's where the Access Technology Institute fits in. ATI offers online training for those interested in becoming assistive technology specialists as well as others who want to improve their computer skills. The courses provide an introduction to screen readers, popular operating systems, and navigation and function commands.

ATI offers Access Technology Training courses that teach the language of the screen reader, the differences between different Windows versions and the capabilities of the screen readers in a variety of applications.

The course is taught via a combination of private study and online interaction with ATI instructors using live Voice Chat voice access technology (the application is available for free at the ATI website). Students are required to spend a certain number of hours of live, voice-chat, classroom time per week. This time is spent learning the various programs, understanding the lessons from the perspective of the student as well as discussions of student relations, special needs of blind and visually impaired students, assessing the needs of students, dealing with rehab counselors, and more.

On-going educational opportunities are available upon completion of the initial training. Students can further their knowledge by exploring other popular applications, including Excel, Access, Outlook, Word, Quicken and even HTML.

The ATI site hosts additional helpful resources, including links to free downloads (such as Popup Stopper which eliminates popup windows), and to a comprehensive index of mailing lists pertaining to blindness and vision-related issues.

For more information about ATI, its courses and course fees, use the contact information below.

Access Technology Institute
Phone: 916.922.3794

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