The aim of this newsletter is to inform you of developments and changes to our major products eLr (Extra Language Resources) and EIA (Enhancing Internet Access). We welcome the opportunity for feedback and questions, and will be pleased to consider including reader contributions and announcements.
This Newsletter is available online at http://www.elr.com.au/news and an email version is sent monthly to members of our mailing list (See Subscribing/Unsubscribing).
In this issue -
This month has been full of conferences, so although there are tasks "in the pipeline", they were not able to be posted on the site for this month. Watch this space for next month!
The Accessability Workshop was held at the Canberra Convention Centre on the 14th and 15th May. It provided an opportunity for the projects funded under AccessAbility grants to describe the design of their projects and where possible present outcomes. Abstracts from the conference are at http://www.dcita.gov.au/commsconf/access_speakers.html and full papers should soon be available from that site.
The eLr team has been involved with two of the projects, so our presence at the trade stand enabled delegates to discuss the products which were developed for the projects, and also to view the other ELR Software products. The two products which relate to the funded projects include:
Computerization of the APAR (Assessment of Phonological Awareness and Reading). This tool has been developed by Teresa Iacono in the project entitled "Enhancing Literacy Skills through Web-Based Materials". The APAR is available free from http://www.med.monash.edu.au/general-practice/units/cddh/accessability2/ (the computerized version will be ready within the next few months). Teresa is keen to have it used by a range of therapists, and has provided feedback mechanisms on the above site.
Development of WordCue. This tool is being developed for the project entitled "Literacy Online" led by Dr Kirsty Williamson. WordCue provides assistance for people with literacy problems who wish to use the Internet. By clicking on a word, a range of cues are displayed. These include a picture of the word, a definition of the word, and an example of its used in a sentence. In all cues, the word or phrase can be spoken to the user.
The eLr Service Delivery Survey was sent out in March of this year. One third of speech pathologist subscribers responded, so we thank you very much for your time. The aim of the survey was to provide our development team with feedback about the issues involved in using eLr within speech pathology service delivery. For many therapists use of computers within therapy is a new concept, and use of the Internet to provide home practice is certainly a new and exciting development.
The results of this survey are being presented at the Speech Pathology Australia National Conference in Melbourne on Tuesday 22nd May. Our paper is titled "Internet Based Delivery of Speech pathology Resource Materials", and is in the Module "Innovative service delivery models in education". The paper will be published on our web site some time after the conference.
The survey provided the therapists with the opportunity to rate the general features of eLr, and the impact of eLr on the efficiency of service delivery. Briefly, we found that the Internet is still unreliable on some days in quite a number of locations. This meant that the speech pathologist could not confidently rely on an Internet based resource set when providing a service. The development of the CD based eLr-Offline has solved this problem. Using the combination of a CD based resource for use in therapy sessions, and the Internet based materials for delivery of home practice, therapists reported a decreased preparation time, increased planning efficiency, and an increase in the provision of home programs.
Again, thank you to the therapists who responded. We plan to provide this feedback opportunity with future surveys. However, we always welcome feedback, so feel free to email us with comments and suggestions at any time.
A couple of pointers when trying to print eLr tasks. Firstly, if you find the margins are being cut off, go into "File-Page Setup" and set the margins (especially left and right) to a small value eg 10mm or less. Or, alternatively use landscape mode page orientation.
The second relates to attempts to print tasks which use the coloured icons, such as the DragCentral and SpinPic games. These icons are actually fonts we've created, and some printers print them as a digit between 0 and 9. Some older releases of Windows95 with MS Internet Explorer (ver 4) installed, and some older printers, seem to have an issue with understanding these fonts. Look at the printer settings (on the print dialog box) and see if you have an option to adjust font settings. Change "Download TrueType fonts as bitmap soft fonts" to "Print TrueType fonts as graphics". Should fix this problem.
Unregistered trial version (fully functional, but pages watermarked as "unregistered")
Unregistered trial version (fully functional, but time limited)
Demonstration of Browser, Tutorial and AAP
For other supporting materials and documents available for free download, please see http://www.elr.com.au/support.htm.
The ELR Software team has been investigating use of the Internet in Speech Pathology service delivery. A 30 minute paper, summarizing our service delivery project has been accepted for inclusion in the Module entitled Innovative Service Delivery Models in Education on Tuesday afternoon 22nd May. The paper is entitled: Internet Based Delivery of Speech Pathology Resource Materials A Seiler, R Seiler, A Breakell, C Treverton.
ELR Software will also be participating in the trade display throughout the conference. Materials on display include eLr, EIA Browser, EIA Tutorial, and the EIA Awareness & Assessment Protocol (AAP).
EIA Software Pty Ltd will be participating at both sites with a display of eLr, Touchscreen technology, and the EIA Browser, EIA Tutorial, and the EIA Awareness & Assessment Protocol (AAP).
The Low Incidence Unit of Education Queensland is holding its 2001 Training and Development Seminar for physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech-language pathologists at the Riverglenn Conference Centre at Indooroopilly in Brisbane. ELR Software will be attending as part of the Trade Display. We look forward to meeting up with our colleagues in sunny Queensland.
The Australian Rehabilitation and Assistive Technology Association Conference 2001 is to be held at the Carlton Crest Hotel in Brisbane. More than 300 delegates from Australia and overseas will be attending the conference. There is usually a mix of clients, assistive technology vendors, and professionals including speech pathologists, occupational therapists, orthotists, physiotherapists, rehabilitation engineers and educators. ELR Software will be presenting a 2.5 hour workshop covering the increasing range of products which have been developed by us over the past 3 years.
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