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SSC Bulletin 26: March 2015

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 News

We are delighted to announce that our core grant has been approved by the Scottish Government for this year (April 15 - March 16) so we can continue to provide our services to you.

Medical Information on Visually Impairing Conditions
The VI Scotland website has now closed, however the Medical Information on Visually Impairing Conditions is still available via the SSC Website:

You may notice we are dipping our toe into the world of webinars next month with our first free webinar Ask an ophthalmologist We hope you will join us, just fill in a form from the website. Please let us know if there are other short topics you think we could cover in this way.


We have been in touch with many of you over the last couple of months about a Mentoring scheme we would like to develop, fostering good practice and allowing experienced professionals to share their knowledge to newer members of staff.

There is now a Scottish version of the VI-Forum (via email) which aims to allow colleagues across Scotland to share practice and disseminate information and research.

Early years working groups
There will be new early years working groups to be set up in the coming months for teachers of visually impaired children and for teachers of the deaf.

Please contact us if you would like more information about any of these developments. Email:


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

SSC Courses

There are lots of courses still to come this session:

Already we have one course set for next session:

SSC Unified English Braille Competency Courses

Contracted:  enrolment for 1st April intake has been completed. 
New applications will be held for 1st September start.

Uncontracted: enrolment for this three month course can be started at the beginning of any month.


“In Other News ...”

MoLLVIS (Mobile Language Learning for Visually Impaired Students) Project
MoLLVIS project plans to create German language learning apps for Windows, Apple and Android devices. The project involves an expert team including representatives of users’ associations, individuals with visual impairment, as well as experts from established language schools, universities and agencies that support people with visual impairment.

Inquiry into attainment of school pupils with a sensory impairment - Call for views
The Scottish Parliament’s Education and Culture Committee is holding a short inquiry to consider how the attainment levels of school pupils with a hearing and/or a visual impairment can be improved.  We invite you to give us concise and specific suggestions about what could be done to improve the attainment of children with a sensory impairment. The deadline for responses is Wednesday 29 April 2015.
For more information about how to respond please see here: Call for views
Further information on the inquiry will be published on our website: Inquiry homepage
If you would like to be added to the Committee’s mailing list to receive further updates about the Committee’s work, please email the address below:
Lewis McNaughton, Assistant Clerk, Education and Culture Committee, Room T3.40, The Scottish Parliament, Edinburgh, EH99 1SP
Direct Dial Tel: 0131 348 5222

CIS Course: An Introduction to Bilateral Integration (Andy Dalziell)
A one-off masterclass, with the co-developer of the Better Movers and Thinkers programme designed to help children and adolescents with specific learning and behavioural problems, will be held by Children in Scotland on Thursday 28 May 2015, Edinburgh
Bilateral Integration was devised by Mrs. Sheila Dobie OBE to help children and adolescents with specific learning and behavioural problems, as well as those individuals who were underachieving. This unique intervention programme requires the performance of physical exercises, and is designed to: Develop coordination and fine motor control; Integrate the sensory systems; Stimulate the essential links between moving and thinking that allow us all to learn and interact with the world around us.

Web and Resources News

Following on from our course last year and the Film Night in January, we have purchased the Connected baby DVDs and the booklet: Sabre tooth tigers and teddy bears: the connected baby guide to understanding attachment.

Connected baby

We now have a few more language assessments: Dorset Assessment of Syntactic Structures (DASS) is a screening assessment of speech based on STASS but developed to be used with older children and adults; Renfrew language scales: Word finding vocabulary test is a simple test to assess young children's vocabulary; Renfrew language scales: Bus story test: a test of narrative speech ascertains the ability give a coherent description of a continuous series of events; Derbyshire Language Scheme is an intervention programme which targets early language skills.

There is an update to the NDCS Acoustics toolkit now available online:


Tip: Remember to check the journal articles database when searching for information.

New library items are available to browse on the website:

All of these items and many more are available from the SSC Library contact Sheila Mackenzie (0131 651 6069 or



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Scottish Sensory Centre, Moray House School of Education, University of Edinburgh, Holyrood Road, Edinburgh EH8 8AQ