Virtual On Line Training (VOLT)
Easter Seals Crossroads Rehabilitation Center now offers Virtual On-Line Training (“VOLT”) as part of our training services. This is an extension of the traditional, one-on-one customized training we have provided over the last thirty years. With this extended service, we are excited to share knowledge and make face-to-face connections with more people from all over the world at the same time.
VOLT classes will be led by live instructors. Just like in a traditional classroom, students can interact with instructors in real-time by:
- asking questions
- obtaining immediate feedback from instructors
- participating in opportunities to engage with other students
- practicing what they learn with exercises designed by the instructors
They will also receive certificates upon course completion.
VOLT might not be a good match for all students. For those students who may require a more customized learning experience, we will continue to provide onsite, one-on-one training.
Interested individuals can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 1-888-466-1314 to sign up and/or obtain more information.
All first-time students must take a one-time introductory class about online training and program orientation before they enroll in courses. This one-time introductory class is $49.
Once a student has completed the introductory class, they are able to participate in a course. Each course will result in six hours of instruction over a three-week period. Each course is $299.
We accept all major credit cards, debit cards and other electronic transfer or payment methods such as PayPal. To sign up for a PayPal account, visit www.paypal.com. Please contact us at 1-888-466-1314 for third-party authorization or other financial arrangements.
A VOLT representative will contact individuals to schedule the one-hour introductory class, discuss the general process and pre-requisites, and provide updated schedules for the course/courses they will participate in.
All first-time students must go through a one-hour class to get familiar with the online training environment. A VOLT representative will send an email invitation for the student to join the class via an online training platform. During the class, students will provide registration information in a one-on-one private setting and review training expectations, on-line conduct and policies, highlights of Easter Seals Crossroads’ Consumer Handbook and the Notice of Privacy Practices. The VOLT representative will then guide the student through the functionality of the online training platform. Through the introductory class, we will be able to assess whether the student or the VOLT representative needs to make any technology adjustments before they join a course.
Students are strongly encouraged to review the general pre-requisites and the list of system specifications in the corresponding sections below. For a general overview of how an online training platform such as “GoToTraining.com” works, visit http://www.gototraining.com/fec/training/online_training. Students can also download a GoToTraining app in their mobile devices so that they can attend meetings anytime, anywhere.
Upon completion of this introductory class, students will receive the intake form and other enrollment forms. Students must sign and return those forms before starting any six-hour course.
Here are the general requirements to set up the technology environment for the virtual online training:
For PC-based participants
- Windows 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
- Cable modem, DSL, or better Internet connection
- Dual-core 2.4GHz CPU or faster with 2GB of RAM (recommended)
For Mac-based participants
- Mac OS X 10.6 – Snow Leopard or newer
- Intel processor (1GB of RAM or better recommended)
- Cable modem, DSL, or better Internet connection
- Participants wishing to connect to audio using VoIP will need a fast Internet connection, a microphone and speakers. (A USB headset is recommended.)
For screen reader users
An Accessible Event meeting can be hosted on any computer running Windows XP or later; both 32- and 64-bit versions of Windows are supported. Accessible Event can also be hosted on the Mac platform, running the OS X Snow Leopard or Lion operating system. A presenter’s audio and video if available, are transmitted to attendees along with supported content. A microphone and camera provide the best results. Certain features of Accessible Event, including displaying previously uploaded documents, are available to presenters from the iOS platform. This platform does not support the transmission of audio or video. On both the Mac and iOS platforms, the display of documents without having previously uploaded them to Accessible Event is not supported.
For attendees, Adobe Flash version 10 or higher is required when joining from a Windows or Mac PC, but this requirement does not extend to the iOS platform. For those who use a screen reader, screen magnifier, and/or Braille display, this same technology can be used to view Accessible Event content. Since the event content is displayed in the web browser, attendees are encouraged to become familiar with web navigation using assistive technology to get the best accessible event experience.
Students must have high-speed internet and the software applications they plan to learn through the online training. They should also have basic experience in using any email and web browsers. Certain courses might have additional pre-requisites. We strongly recommend students to use a headset with microphone to attend the training.
Examples of Available Courses
- Kurzweil 3000 (Level 1 and Level 2)
- Kurzweil 1000 (Level 1 and Level 2)
- Open Book (Level 1 and Level 2)
- LiveScribe Pen / LiveScribe Desktop (Level 1 and Level 2)
- Dragon Naturally Speaking (Level 1 and Level 2)
- Window Speech Recognition (Level 1)
- Windows with JAWS (Level 1)
- MS Outlook 2007/2010 with Screen Magnification (Level 1 and Level 2)
- IOS Devices with VoiceOver (Level 1)
- iPad Accessibility Features (Level 1)
Our current course catalog is listed here. We look forward to your suggestions for additional courses.
Training Expectations, Conduct and Policies
Students are expected to follow instructions from any VOLT representative or instructor. They are also expected to prepare for and participate in the training in order to learn effectively in the online environment. During the training session, if instructors find any student not ready for online training and/or displaying inappropriate etiquette that disrupts the training, they reserve the right to disconnect that student from the training session and proceed with the rest of other students.
Quizzes and Certificates
There will be three quizzes with each given out after the second, the fourth and the last classes. Students are expected to complete and turn in all the quizzes any time but no later than the seventh day after the end of the last class. A certificate of completion will be issued when the instructor receives all the quizzes timely. If students attend all six classes but cannot turn in all the quizzes timely, they will be issued a certificate of attendance.
Attendance and Cancellation
Students will receive notification 48 hours in advance should the training be cancelled. If students cannot attend the training, they should notify a VOLT representative or instructor 48 hours in advance of the training. Refunds generally are not available unless the training session is cancelled by Easter Seals Crossroads and there is no alternative date. Certain exceptions apply depending on the circumstances.
Online Training Etiquette
When taking a course online, it is important to remember several points of etiquette that will smooth communication between the students and their instructors.
- Respect others. In online learning, students from various backgrounds come together to learn. It is important to respect all students’ feelings and opinions though they may differ from your own.
- Tone down your language. Given the absence of face-to-face clues, written text can easily be misinterpreted. Avoid the use of strong or offensive language and the excessive use of exclamation points.
- Pick the right tone. Since we often depend on the written word in online learning, it is especially important to choose the right words to get your meaning across. For example, sarcasm is harder to detect when you read the words rather than hearing them.
- Consider others’ privacy. Ask for permission if you want to forward someone’s email messages to third parties. Keep in mind that all private email mail is considered copyrighted by the original author.
- Avoid inappropriate material.
- Be forgiving. If someone writes something that you find offensive, mention this directly to the instructor. Remember that the person contributing to the discussion might be new to this form of communication. What you find offensive may quite possibly have been unintended and can best be cleared up by the instructor.
- Think before you hit the send button. Think carefully about the content of your message before contributing it. Once sent to the group, there is no taking it back. Grammar and spelling errors reflect on you and your audience might not be able to decode misspelled words or poorly constructed sentences.
- Brevity is best. Be as concise as possible when contributing to a discussion. Your points might be missed if hidden in a flood of text.
- Stick to the point. Contributors to a discussion should stick to the subject. Do not waste others’ time by going off on irrelevant tangents.
- Frivolous email. Do not forward jokes, “chain letters” or unimportant email to other students without those students’ permission. Not only do these things fill up their mailboxes, but they may also offend people who do not share the same sense of humor or who are tired of these types of email.
- Read first, write later. Do not add your comments to a discussion before reading the comments of other students unless the assignment specifically asks you to.
- Netspeak. Although electronic communication is still young, many conventions have already been established. DO NOT TYPE IN ALL CAPS. This is regarded as shouting and is out of place in a classroom. Acronyms and emoticons (arrangements of symbols to express emotions) are popular, but excessive use of them can make your message difficult to read. Some common ones include: FYI = for your information; = smiley face, happiness, pleasure; B/C = because; = frowning face, displeasure; W/ = with; = wink; BTW = by the way; :-0 = shock, surprise; F2F = face to face; :-/ = skepticism, unease, apologetic; FAQ = frequently asked questions, etc.
- Keep attachments small. If it is necessary to send pictures, change the size to 100k or smaller.
“App(s)” – Application software, also called an app, software for specific purposes.
“Consumer Handbook” – It is a book that provides information on Easter Seals Crossroads’ code of ethics, entrance criteria, order of acceptance, service overview, consumers expectations, available vocational services, health and safety protocol, crisis behavior management policy, consumer’s bill of rights and contact phone numbers.
“CPU” – A central processing unit (CPU), also referred to as a central processor unit, is the hardware within a computer system or smartphone which carries out the instructions of a computer program by performing the basic arithmetical, logical, and input/output operations of the system.
“DSL” – Digital subscriber line (DSL) is a family of technologies that provide Internet access by transmitting digital data over the wires of a local telephone network.
“Instructor” or “Instructors” – A teacher, or professor, of a specialized subject that involves skill.
“Notice of Privacy Practices” – It is a notice that describes how medical information about consumers may be used and disclosed and how consumers can get access to this information.
“Student” or “Students” – A learner, or someone who attends an educational institution.
“USB” – A universal serial bus (USB) is an industry standard that defines the cables, connectors and communications protocols used in a bus for connection, communication and power supply between computers and electronic devices. It was designed to standardize the connection of computer peripherals, such as keyboards, pointing devices, digital cameras, printers, portable media players, disk drives and network adapters to personal computers, both to communicate and to supply electric power.
“Virtual online training” – Live teacher instruction and feedback online that enables real-time voice interaction, whiteboard sharing, and breakout sessions to enhance a student’s learning experience. This provides students an opportunity to interact with the teacher as well as classmates by oral and written communication.
“VoIP” – Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) commonly refers to the communication protocols, technologies, methodologies, and transmission techniques involved in the delivery of voice communications and multimedia sessions over Internet Protocol (IP) networks, such as the Internet.
“VOLT representative” – Any person who delivers messages about VOLT; a VOLT representative can be any employee from the Assistive Technology Center of Easter Seals Crossroads.