Information [2011]


23rd Annual Postsecondary Disability Training Institute (PTI)


Tuesday, June 7 – Friday, June 10 & Saturday, June 11, 2011

Holiday Inn by the Bay

Portland, Maine

sponsored by the

Center on Postsecondary Education and Disability

University of Connecticut


Last updated 6/21/11

How do You Meet the Unique Needs of College Students with Disabilities?

Come learn skills you’ll use every day! The objective of this Training Institute is to assist concerned professionals to meet the unique needs of college students with disabilities. Participants can select from a variety of Strands, Single Sessions, a Mini-Strand and a Post-Session taught by experts in the field that provide participants with in-depth information and adequate time for questions and follow-up activities.

Participants also have opportunities to share information and network with each other at various activities throughout the week.

Should You Attend?

Yes! If you are one of the following, you should attend this Institute:

  • LD/Disability Specialist
  • 504/ADA Administrator
  • Administrator
  • Faculty / Instructor / Tutor
  • Educational and Career Counselors
  • Academic Skills Center Personnel


Click here to view the 2011 schedule.

Poster Session (Tuesday evening, 7:30-9:00 p.m.)

Following is a sampling of proposed topics. Exact poster titles and presenter names will be posted soon!

  • Making the Connection: Providing a Faculty Mentorship Program for New Students with Disabilities ~ Larry Markle, M.A., Ball State University, IN
  • Universal Design for Instruction (UDI) On-Line Project: Applying UDI to Online and Blended Courses ~ Kim McKeown, M.A., PMP & Nicholas Gelbar, M.A., University of Connecticut, Storrs
  • The Achilles Project: An Award-Winning Program Supporting 2E Students to Succeed at the College Level ~ Vasiliki Valerie Lagakis, Ed.D., Orval Jewett, MSW, Nassau Community College/SUNY, NY; Fran Viscovich, Professor, Envoronmental Science; and NCC Achilles Program Students
  • Think College: Postsecondary Education Options for Students with Intellectual Disabilities ~ Karen Zimbrich, University of Massachusetts, Boston
  • Strategies for Working with Faculty to Successfully Support Students with Disabilities ~ Jennifer Aitken & Tracy Amerman, New Jersey City University, NJ
  • Creating Access to Study Aboard Opportunities for Students with Disabilities ~ Joanne Benica & Kathy Schwartz, American Univesrity, DC
  • Technology for Universal Design for Learning ~ James Stachowiak & Tom Shaff, University of Iowa
  • Achieving College Success Now (ACES): Enhancing Success through Transition and Universal Design ~ Laraine Demshock & Kathi Jo Weinert, Northampton Community College, PA
  • College Students with Learning Disabilities’ Perception of their Academic Experiences through Student Development Theory ~ Wanda Hadley, Central State University, OH
  • Campus Access Services Dares Students to DREAM! ~ Crystal Hill & Linda Copney-Okeke, Univesrity of New Haven, CT

Strand Descriptions

Please note: Each Strand is continuous for three days. You will make one choice from Strand I and one choice from Strand II. Also note the level of the Strand appears in parentheses after the title. Please select your attendance accordingly.

Strand I, Sessions A-D (Wednesday, Thursday & Friday, 8:15-10:00 a.m.)

  1. Students on the Autism Spectrum and Social Interaction: Where is the Syllabus for That? (intermediate) ~ Christine Wenzel, M.A., University of Connecticut, Storrs. As we know, a defining characteristic of individuals on the autism spectrum is that they struggle with social interaction. While a great deal of research and attention has been placed on building social skills for this population in the K-12 years, not much is offered in the way of practical advice when these students enter the college arena – an environment we know to be highly social in nature. In this interactive session, participants will learn what the Center for Students with Disabilities at the University of Connecticut is doing to help this population navigate the social world of UConn. Over the course of the three days, participants will be exposed to practical ways to work with these students in an effort to build social awareness. Participants will have an opportunity to partake in activities and strategies developed for working with these students as well as engage in discussions as to the effectiveness of these strategies. Through participation in this strand, it is the goal that attendees will: develop an understanding of the social challenges these students meet on a college campus; learn specific strategies to take back to their own campus and ways to share them with students; and comprehend why these strategies are effective.
  2. Learning Disability and ADHD Documentation 101 (beginner) ~ Deborah Merchant, Ph.D., Keene State College, NH & David R. Parker, Ph.D., Children’s Resource Group, Inc., IN. Novices to the field of postsecondary disability services may feel overwhelmed and confused when reviewing evaluations of students with learning disabilities (LD) and/or attention deficit/hyperactivity disorders (ADHD). What do these reports tell us and how can we use them to make eligibility/accommodations decisions? Geared for newcomers to the field, this strand will include information related to the fundamentals of assessment, common methods of diagnosing LD and ADHD, widely-used assessment instruments, and recommended practices for documentation review. Participants will have hands-on opportunities to explore tools and methods for determining reasonable accommodations based on example documentation provided by the presenters.
  3. Universal Design for Instruction (UDI) Applied to Online and Blended Courses: An e-Toolbox for Service Providers and Faculty (beginner) ~ Kimberly McKeown, M.A., PMP, Joan M. McGuire, Ph.D., Manju Banerjee, Ph.D., Nicholas Gelbar, M.A., & Joseph Madaus, Ph.D., University of Connecticut, Storrs. The rapid growth in online and blended courses requires consideration of the access needs of students with cognitive disabilities. The presentation team and postsecondary faculty will highlight the application of UDI in such courses through the demonstration of specific e-Tools that can promote UDI.
  4. The ADA’s Ever-Changing Landscape and Redefining Access (intermediate) ~ Jeanne M. Kincaid, J.D., Portsmouth, NH. Twenty years after the ADA’s enactment, disability service providers and ADA Coordinators are faced with some new challenges in light of Congressional amendments to the Act, revised regulatory standards that take effect the spring of 2011 and the Department of Justice’s notice of its intent to promulgate additional regulations addressing everything from furniture and equipment, to web design and access, movie captioning and video description. Attorney Kincaid will update the participants on the status of the measures that will then be in effect and those that are likely to face colleges and universities in the near future. The presenter will address the growing emphasis on enhancing access to information and update attendees on a spate of litigation and complaints brought by the National Federation for the Blind and what it may mean for postsecondary institutions. Attorney Kincaid will also update the participants on recent court and agency rulings on an array of disability issues.

Strand II, Sessions E-H (Wednesday, Thursday & Friday, 10:15-12:00 p.m.)

  1. Disability Services Administration: Complexities, Challenges, and Opportunities (intermediate/advanced) ~ Donna M. Korbel, M.Ed. & Sue A. Saunders, Ph.D., University of Connecticut, Storrs. Considerable change is taking place in higher education administration. Ongoing technological advances, an ever increasing and more diverse student population, more emphasis on accountability and measureable outcomes are all reaching a crescendo. Meanwhile there is criticism of the unprecedented increases in the cost of higher education while state funding for public higher education and endowments for private education are dwindling in the face of our uncertain global economic crisis. Disability service administrators must be fully apprised of this changing landscape in order to effectively continue their leadership and advocacy on behalf of students with disabilities and to assure their institutions are complying with the letter as well of the spirit of the evolving legal mandates. This session will provide an overview of all of these issues with particular emphasis on emerging populations of students with disabilities, the anticipated impact of shifting higher education priorities and most importantly strategies for administrators to develop for their own campuses.
  2. Disability Documentation: Understanding the Basics and Deciphering the Complex (intermediate/advanced) ~ Manju Banerjee, Ph.D., University of Connecticut, Storrs & Loring Brinckerhoff, Ph.D., Educational Testing Service, NJ. Back by popular demand, this strand will introduce and describe a variety of technical terminology used in disability documentation such as functional limitation, significant discrepancy, average person standard, episodic and mitigating measures, including a review of psychometric terminology as it relates to data reporting and interpretation of scores. Using the Disability Decision Making Model, participants will learn how to mine disability documentation for evidence in determining eligibility for: 1) extended time; 2) note-taker services; 3) alternative media; and 4) foreign language substitution. Participants will have the opportunity to submit a complex case for a lottery drawing and review by the presenters, with audience participation, on day three.
  3. Executive Function, Theory of Mind, and Students on the Autism Spectrum (intermediate) ~ Jane Thierfeld Brown, Ed.D., University of Connecticut School of Law, Hartford & Lorraine E. Wolf, Ph.D., Boston University. Knowing who we are and understanding why we do what we do are the hallmarks of being an adult. These skills mature during the adolescence and young adulthood, thus most students graduate college as fully fledged adult who possess the essential skills to take them to careers and adult life. Moving students along the developmental continuum is part of our mission in disability services but curiously, these attributes seem to be differently developed in individuals on the autism spectrum. This strand will use cutting edge theories of brain and cognitive development to understand the interplay between executive functioning and theory of mind. Participants will learn to foster development of self- regulatory skills in college students on the spectrum
  4. Grant Writing: How to Develop Successful Proposals to Support Your Program and Students (intermediate/advanced) ~ Stan Shaw, Ed.D., University of Connecticut, Storrs. Participants will learn how to supplement their office budget and better serve students in this challenging fiscal environment by writing successful grants. The presenter will help you identify grant opportunities, organize a grant writing team and collaborators, select a fundable idea, conceptualize your proposal, plan a grant budget, and write a competitive grant. During the three days, you will be able to practice writing important elements (e.g., abstract, operational table, budget) of a grant. Participants are encouarged to bring their ideas for grant topics or even information on grant competitions that can be developed during this strand.

Mini-Strand Descriptions (Wednesday & Thursday, 7:00-9:00 p.m.)

Choose one as each Mini-Strand will meet for two sessions.

Mini-Strand I

  • Supporting College Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders through the Complexities of the Campus Maze: Transition, Social Language, and Success (beginner/intermediate) ~ Michaelene P. Cronin, J.D. & Andy Donahue, M.A., Landmark College, VT. In this mini-strand, participants will review diagnostic criteria and characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), and create a menu of interventions that support students. An examination of more focused approaches will look at expansive opportunities disability services offices can incorporate to support the unique social challenges students face on college campuses. These social issues our students encounter can significantly affect their academics and, ultimately, their retention. The disability services office is in a unique collaborative position, open to create and support a student-driven social language curriculum with socialization opportunities that support student’s participation in campus life.

    Mini-Strand II

  • Creating Safe Zones for Students with Disabilities (all levels) ~ Julie R. Alexandrin, Ph.D., University of Southern Maine; Ilana Lyn Schreiber, B.A., Hidden Disabilities Network, ME; & Monica Chenard, B.A., University of Southern Maine. The presenters will focus on a national study of disclosing hidden disabilities, which indicated that students are not feeling understood on campuses, nor benefitting from disclosure. Based on the results of the study, the researchers have created trainings and factsheets to aid professors in better understanding supporting students with disabilities.

Single Sessions (see below for specific days and times)

Please note: You do not need to register for Single Sessions.

Click here to see full descriptions and presenter information.

Wednesday, 1:30-3:00

  • A Grass Roots Approach to Infusing Universal Design for Learning in Higher Education Systems
  • Grievance and Code of Conduct Procedures for Prompt, Equitable Resolution and Due Process
  • The Nuts and Bolts of High Quality Note-Taking Services
  • What I Know Now that I Wish I’d Known Then!
  • Postsecondary Transition: Past, Present, and Future

Wednesday, 3:15-4:30

  • Using Technology to Implement Universal Design for Learning
  • The Essential Six: How to Pave the Path to Self-Advocacy for College Students with Learning Disabilities
  • Creating an Online Case Management System: Hints, Tips, and Need to Knows! (Note: This is a two-part session and will be continued Thursday, 3:15-4:30.)
  • Outside the Classroom: Advancing Students with Disabilities in Graduate Programs, Social Work, and Health Professions

Thursday, 1:30-3:00

  • Achieving College Success Now (ACES): Enhancing Success through Transition and Universal Instructional Design
  • Credibility, Communication, Collaboration: Working Successfully with Faculty
  • Self-Advocacy and Disclosure: An Interactive Model for Developing Skills in Students with Disabilities
  • Meeting the Postsecondary Educational Needs of Students with Acquired Brain Injuries
  • Improving Math Success: Study Skills for Students with Disabilities (Note: While not required, it is suggested that it would be beneficial to also attend the math-related session on Friday at 1:30.)

Thursday, 3:15-4:30

  • Meeting the Needs of Returning Military Veterans: The At Ease Project
  • Code of Conduct Violations: Should Students be Afforded Accommodations when Disability is the Cause?
  • Career Development and Employment Transition for College Students with Disabilities
  • Creating an Online Case Management System: Hints, Tips, and Need to Knows! (Note: This is part two of a session that begins on Wednesday.)

Friday, 1:30-3:00

  • Unique Methods for Meeting the Needs of College Students with Disabilities
  • Student Voices: Perceptions of Students with Disabilities about College Success Characteristics and Career Readiness
  • Strengthen Disability Service Programs via Self-Audit
  • Providing Appropriate Educational and Testing Accommodations for Math Students (Note: While not required, it is suggested that it would be beneficial to also attend the math-related session on Thursday at 1:30.)


Post-Sessions (Saturday, 9:00-12:00)

Post-Session I:

Coaching College Students with ADHD: Research to Practice (intermediate) ~ Frances Prevatt, Ph.D., Florida State University & David R. Parker, Ph.D., Children’s Resource Group, IN. This post-session will include back-to-back sessions from two seasoned presenters who have studied related models of ADHD college coaching. The presenters will provide detailed information from their published work about several ADHD coaching programs for college students. Dr. Prevatt will begin with an overview of the ADHD Coaching Program offered at Florida State University. Dr. Parker will continue with an overview of the national study (10 campuses) of Edge Foundation coaching services conducted by Wayne State University and compare this to a recent study he co-conducted at Landmark College. Drs. Prevatt and Parker will then facilitate ample discussion with participants about the goals of ADHD coaching, what makes this service delivery model different from existing campus services, and what else we need to learn about coaching with further research and practice. Participants will receive resource information about the coaching model, sources of coaching training, and how to refer students to highly qualified private practice coaches. For additional details about this presentation, please click here.

Post-Session II:

Career Planning, Self-Determination, and the ADAA (beginner/intermediate) ~ William E. Hitchings, Ph.D. & Ryan Saddler, M.Ed., St. Ambrose University, IA; Paul Retish, Ed.D., University of Iowa. Participants will engage in elements of a career workshop used to improve the transition of college students with disabilities to employment. The workshop was developed to help students as well as career center staff address the career decision-making needs of college students with disabilities. Using case studies, participants will develop a career plan for individuals with disabilities using activities and materials shown to improve the career decision-making, self-determination skills, and ADAA knowledge of college students with disabilities. In addition, participants will share what career planning is done with students at their institution.

Auxiliary Aids and/or Services

The Center on Postsecondary Education and Disability would like to ensure that no individual with a disability is excluded, denied services, or otherwise treated differently from other individiuals attending the institute because of the absence of auxiliary aids and/or services.

Please contact us about special accommodation needs at your earliest convenience, but no later than May 1, 2011 so that there is sufficient time to make appropriate arrangements. Special equipment (which is borrowed from other resources) and/or materials in alternate format will not be available on-site unless specifically requested in advance.

A special note about sign language interpreters. Our experience has been that interpreters can be booked solid months and months in advance. If you require interpreters, please contact me as soon as you are sure you will be attending the Institute so there is ample time to locate qualified interpreters.

Registration Information

Early $395 – Payment [check or PO] must be received [not just postmarked] on or before April 29, 2011.

Regular: $495 – Payment [check or PO] must be received [not just postmarked] on or before May 13, 2011.

On-Site: $595All registrations received after May 13, 2011 will be considered “On-Site” registrations and processed accordingly.

Discount Registration: $425 – Discount rate for each member of a group of three (3) or more individuals registering together (i.e., mail in materials together) from the same institution. Payment [check or PO] must be received [not just postmarked] on or before May 13, 2011. Group registrations received after May 13, 2011 will be considered “On-Site” registrations and processed accordingly.

Saturday Post-Session: Regular: $75; On-Site: $100. Registrations received after May 13, 2011 will be considered “On-Site” registrations and processed accordingly.

Additional Registration Information

  • Please note: In fairness to all participants, we respectfully request that all adults register for the conference if they are attending the conference’s functions (e.g., reception, continental breakfasts, and/or sessions) and that children are not brought into sessions.
  • See the registration form for detailed payee information. Questions pertaining to the status of your registration or payment should be directed to Project Solutions at 207-797-7130. As noted on the registration form, checks should be made payable to University of Connecticut-Project Solutions. Checks that are not made payable in this manner will be returned to the issuer to be rewritten.
  • All registration forms must be accompanied by either payment or a valid purchase order number noted on the registration form. Registration forms received without payment or a valid PO number will be returned.
  • Credit cards are not a payment option.
  • Foreign payment must be made in U.S. funds. Any charges levied by U.S. banks will be billed to the issuer of the check.
  • Registration includes a Tuesday evening reception and daily continental breakfasts (Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday; and Saturday if you register for the Post-Session).
  • Invoices are due and payable upon receipt. If payment in full is not received by June 30, 2011, a fee of $50.00/month will be assessed thereafter until payment in full is received. If payment is not made in accordance with the published deadlines, the difference will be invoiced and late charges will apply until such time as payment is received. There will be no exceptions made.
  • CEU’s: We are unable to offer CEU’s in conjunction with this Institute. Participants will receive a Certificate of Attendance on-site that states the number of contact hours and other pertinent information about the Institute.

Cancellation Policy

You will receive a complete refund if you cancel by 4:00 p.m., EDT, May 6, 2011. We are unable to refund registration fees for cancellations made after this date. If you do not attend and do not cancel in accordance with the above guidelines by calling Project Solutions at 207-797-7130, you will be liable for the full registration fee. Participant substitutions may be made at any time. The University of Connecticut reserves the right to change instructors and to cancel or reschedule this program in the event of insufficient enrollment or unforeseen circumstances.

Hotel Information

This will be our fifth visit to By the Bay! The pleasures of vacationing or doing business at Holiday Inn By the Bay includes a wide variety of amenities to fit everyone’s needs. Whether staying for business or pleasure, you will be sure to enjoy the large indoor pool, saunas, and a fully equipped fitness center. After a day filled with activities, relax in the lounge or enjoy elegant dining in the restaurant.

Room rate will be $105.00 (single/double) plus 7% sales tax.

Contact the Holiday Inn By the Bay at 800-345-5050 to make your reservation. Be sure to indicate you are attending the UConn Institute to receive the conference room rate.

Please note: As is customary, a maximum number of rooms are blocked for the conference and after that number is reached, or May 7, 2011, whichever comes first, reservations at the conference rate will be honored on a first-come, first-serve availability basis. This is standard practice in the industry and is beyond our control. If the hotel reaches capacity, you are encouraged to make a reservation elsewhere but are also encouraged to check back with the Holiday Inn By the Bay from time to time [even the day before the Institute begins!] as there can be last minute cancellations that will free up rooms.

Come Prepared with Warm Clothing 

Regulating the temperature in meeting rooms is an age-old problem in the hospitality business. Please know the facility always does its best to regulate temps in a timely manner, but these vary large heating/cooling systems take time to adjust. Come prepared with the appropriate clothing to keep warm.

Airport, Hotel Shuttle, Train, and Bus Information

Portland International Jetport (PWM) is the closest airport and is served by most major airlines. Visit the Jetport’s website at for additional information.

Holiday Inn by the Bay provides complementary hotel shuttle service between the hotel and the Jetport for overnight guests at the hotel. Use the courtesy phone in the baggage claim area to make arrangements for pickup.

The hotel shuttle is not accessible. To arrange for accessible transportation between the Jetport and By the Bay, at your earliest convenience, please contact Keith Young, Meeting and Convention Coordinator for the Holiday Inn By the Bay, at 800-345-5070. Before you call, please have arrival date/time and departure date/time details available.

Train travel is possible via the Portland Transportation Center on Amtrak’s Downeaster. Visit the Transportation Center’s website at for additional information.

Bus travel is possible via Concord Trailways. Visit their website at for additional information.

You may also wish to visit the Experience Portland Maine website at where you’ll find a variety of transportation options.

Visitor Information

Just minutes away from it all… Stroll along the working Portland waterfront or take a cruise on island studded Casco Bay. You are just a short walk from the excitement of downtown Portland. Taste the charge of the Old Port’s restaurants, shops, and galleries or experience Portland’s many theaters, the Children’s Museum, the Museum of Art, or catch a sports event at the Civic Center! In nearby Freeport, you will find numerous outlet stores including the L.L. Bean Factory Outlet. Portland International Jetport (PWM) is just three miles away, with a complementary shuttle for overnight guests at the hotel.

Following are a number of websites that can provide additional information on the Portland area:

Portland’s Downtown District:

Maine Office of Tourism:

Convention and Visitor’s Bureau – Greater Portland / Casco Bay:

Maine Convention and Visitors Bureau: