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Archived News: What's New
August 2013

Announcing NEW VCU-ACE Seminars on The Comprehensive Autism Planning System!!

VCU-ACE is pleased to announce the release of our newest online seminars!! Joining our seminars on Characteristics of Autism
Spectrum Disorder
, Environmental Structure and Visual Supports, and Communication, are five short seminars on The Comprehensive Autism Planning System (CAPS). VCU-ACE Training Staff, Dawn Hendricks and Selena Layden, join three staff from the Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence (OCALI), Shawn Henry, Amy Bixler Coffin, and Brenda Smith Myles, in describing CAPS, its purpose, and essential elements. Case studies are also included to help educators understand how CAPS can be implemented for students with ASD.

CAPS is a comprehensive, yet easy-to-use system that provides a framework to help educators implement an instructional program for students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The CAPS model breaks the student's program into core components and helps educators determine when to target critical goals, including those related to communication and social skills; identify the structure, supports, and instructional strategies required; as well as delineate the data collection to be used to ensure students are progressing.

Visit the VCU-ACE website to access all of our online seminars.


VCU-ACE New Online Course Coming Soon!!

VCU-ACE is excited to announce that our newest online course, Providing Effective Instruction for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder, is set to launch in October 2013! This 5-week course will help teachers refine their current practices, learn new tools and strategies, and improve student outcomes. This professional development opportunity includes a focus on teaching skills beyond academics. In particular, social and communication skills will be addressed using systematic instruction. Several learning formats will be utilized, including audio presentations, interactive activities, and a discussion board. Stay tuned for more information including when you can begin to register!!


VCU-ACE Develops a Train the Trainer Model for Paraprofessional Training!

VCU-ACE has developed curriculum and a Train the Trainer model to prepare division leaders with the necessary skills and materials to provide the VCU-ACE live paraprofessional training to staff in their divisions. The training also gives suggestions for post-training follow-up activities to further promote application of skills. In July, VCU-ACE provided this training to members of the Southeastern Cooperative Educational Programs (SECEP) and several VDOE T/TAC staff. The training was enthusiastically received by all who attended. For more information about the Train the Trainer model for paraprofessionals, please contact Dr. Selena J. Layden at


VCU–ACE Participates in Longwood University’s Autism Summer Institute!

Longwood University held their 2013 Autism Spectrum Disorders Summer Institute on July 24 & 25, 2013. Taryn Goodwin, VCU-ACE Training Associate, was among the many presenters providing professional development to those in attendance. Taryn presented on Proactive Strategies for Addressing Sensory Dysfunction. Thirty participants from around the state joined Taryn to learn about sensory dysfunction and how it impacts those individuals identified as having ASD. Teachers, pre-service teachers, speech language pathologists, and paraprofessionals all were given evidence-based strategies to employ with students in their classrooms. Attendees who participated in this two-day event were eligible to earn Continuing Education Credits (CEUs), which can be used toward licensure recertification. Visit Longwood University’s website for more information on this event.


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