University of Edinburgh

SSC Bulletin 14: February 2013

    Sharing information with everyone who is involved in the education of deaf children, deafblind children and visually impaired children and young people, the young people themselves and their families.


    SSC Courses Coming up ...

    Wednesday, 13 March 2013
    Audiology workshop
    FREE (Booking essential)

    Representatives of major audiology companies will deliver presentations on their equipment. Participants will have the opportunity to have hands-on sessions and gain experience of new audiological equipment in use. Richard Vaughan will present on the latest Soundfield systems and there will be a plenary session on compatibility with the latest FM systems and cochlear implants.

    Target Audience: Teachers, parents and all those working with deaf children and young people in schools.

    Presenters: Richard Vaughan, Connevans;
    Gareth Challis, PC Werth;
    Graham Breakenridge, Classroom Communications.


    Modifying Written English: Unit K318
    SSC Signature Accredited Course: Level 3 Award in Modifying Written English Texts for Deaf People is designed for people who wish to work with and for deaf people who may require support in accessing written English: teachers, communication support workers, tutors and other support staff working with deaf pupils and students as well as parents. The course is run over 10 months via an online distance learning format. Unit K318 Accessible English for Deaf and Deafblind People forms the first part of the Level 3 award.

    Closing date: 1st March 2013. For more information visit our website:

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    Braille Competency Courses
    We are accepting applications for the SSC Braille Competency Courses, Grade 1 and Grade 2 for an April 2013 start.

    For more information visit our website:

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    SSC News

    Outreach Courses

    This month, in collaboration with the Royal Blind School Edinburgh, the SSC braved the wintry weather to deliver bespoke training to staff from Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire and Moray who were gathered at Aberdeen School for the Deaf.

    Rachel O'Neill gave training on the Assessment of Comprehension and Expression (ACE) which tests delayed language development in primary-aged children. The ACE test is useful for assessing the child's stage of development in speaking, listening and comprehension skills. It helps teachers work out IEP targets and part of the day was focused on looking at how accurately an IEP matches the needs of the child.

    Participants said: "Content very relevant for all pupils, very thought provoking."

    "Activities and info well linked. Clear info, great presentation."

    Meanwhile Janis Sugden and Elaine Brackenridge (Depute Head Teacher at the Royal Blind School, Edinburgh) worked with staff on a wide range of activities and ideas for developing and teaching Braille skills to their children. The day covered aspects from pre-braille skills for wee ones to specialist areas such as mathematics.

    Participanst said: "Great opportunity to explore resources."
    "A good balance of information and hands-on practical demonstration."


    Positive Play DVD

    We are very pleased to say that of the 500 pressed, over 300 have been distributed. Make sure you have your copy before they're all gone!

    Meanwhile work is continuing on the second DVD for this package.


    Pathway course review

    New applications for the Pathway to Competence route are on hold until the course can undergo a full review. It is hoped that accreditation for this course will be achieved following the review. Current students on the Pathway will continue as planned.


    "In Other News ..."

    National Conference on Visually Impaired Children and Young People

    This conference will be held on Friday, 19 April 2013 at the Stirling Management Centre. Please circulate this information to your colleagues and networks. Following a child's pathway from early development to post-16 transition, the conference aims to:

    Promote habilitation and independent living skills
    Explore good practice in the field of education, health and social care
    Develop pathways and joint sensory strategies to success
    Promote cross sector collaboration

    It is anticipated that the event will be of interest to policy makers, educationalists, paediatricians, social work, habilitation workers, optometrists and ophthalmologists. Limited space will be available to display poster presentations. If you wish to submit a poster presentation please register your intention by contacting

  • or calling 0131 652 3140 by 22nd March 2013.

    The conference will be free of charge and in the meantime please hold the date in your diary.


    Usher Syndrome Conference

    Do you have Usher Syndrome? Do you know anyone who has Usher Syndrome? Do you work or care for someone with Usher Syndrome? Then please join Deafblind Scotland and guest speakers. Deafblind Scotland are holding a FREE conference on 5 March in Dundee. To book your place and for more information please email:

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    NDCS Healthy Minds Training: Improve the emotional well-being of deaf children and young people.

    Healthy Minds Training will take place at NDCS in Glasgow on Thursday, 18 April 2013 and is open to all those who work and care for deaf children and young people. In 2008 NDCS developed the Healthy Minds resource encouraging young deaf people to use positive strategies for managing their deafness and developing their self-esteem and confidence.

    The Healthy Minds has six sessions: four are focused generally on developing a positive sense of self and emotional health and wellbeing, the final two focus specifically on deafness, developing a healthy deaf identity and managing deafness.

    Cost: £80.00, to book a place or for more information please contact Martin Brown

  • or 0113 286 2908 / 07713307649


    Dunbar SciFest

    The award winning Dunbar SciFest is back for 2013! The Parent Council of Dunbar Primary School is organising its 3rd amazing weekend-long science festival for families in Edinburgh, the Lothians, Borders and beyond.

    We are building upon the phenomenal success of last year's event, where an extraordinary mix of 50 different activities attracted over 3,500 visitors. This year's extended programme is fantastic, with over 40 event providers delivering an incredible range of science shows, workshops, drop-in sessions, talks and films. There are events to suit teenagers and even storytelling for the wee ones. Some of the shows are presented in British Sign Language and all the shows will be BSL/English interpreted.

    Dunbar SciFest 2013 will take place over the weekend of Saturday 16 March (10am-5pm) and Sunday 17 March 2013 (10am-5pm) in the John Muir Campus of Dunbar Primary School and the new Bleachingfield Community Centre.

    Family tickets cost just £10.

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    Library News

    We have a new language assessment in the library: York assessment of reading for comprehension which enables teachers to assess children's reading attainment from age 4-11.

    Four new items come courtesy of NDCS.

    Memory and learning: a programme to support deaf children with their working memory is by the team at Oxford University and contains an interactive programme of exercises and games to help improve working memory skills in deaf children.

    Supporting the achievement of deaf children in secondary schools is a resource for all staff involved in the education of deaf children in secondary schools. (Includes references to the system in England and Wales.)

    What are you feeling? a guide to developing emotional vocabulary for children who are deaf and may have learning difficulties is an adapted version of the older NDCS resource on feelings but aimed at deaf children with learning difficulties.

  • Weblink
  • In conjunction with Birmingham City Council, NDCS have issued this short DVD on Early years matters: successful inclusion of young deaf children aimed at early years practitioners who work with deaf children about how to make sure deaf children are included in everyday activities at nursery or playgroup.


    Two items have arrived in the library recently by Kerstin Arman about communication with children with dual sensory impairment:

    From experience to conversation: what are the requirements for a partner to perceive and respond to expressions from a child with congenital deaf-blindness? examining the role of the communication partner and

    How a child tries to make sense of the word: a casestudy: dialogicality and linguistic practice in the education of a boy with congenital deafblindness, a study of how to interpret and understand signs presented by a child with congenital deafblindness.

  • Email the library at
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    SSC is a national centre funded by the Scottish Government (Learning Directorate, Support and Wellbeing) and the University of Edinburgh.

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