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Experts on Communication Disorders Host Presence’s Second EXTRA CREDIT Summer Series of Webinars on Diagnosing Autism

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SAN FRANCISCO, June 10, 2014 – According to theCenter for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network, one in every 68 children has been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Because of this alarming percentage, it is imperative that therapists and special educators work together to successfully diagnose and treat students with ASD. To help equip therapists and special educators to do this, PresenceLearning is hosting a free continuing education webinar, “Interprofessional Collaboration: Early Identification of Children At Risk for ASD” on Wednesday, June 18, 2014 at 11:00 AM Pacific Time/2:00 PM Eastern Time. This webinar, hosted by communication disorder specialists Dr. Kathy Coufal and Dr. Trisha Self, is the second of three webinars in the EXTRA CREDIT summer series.

To sign up for the webinar, visit:

The two-hour webinar will describe how a diagnostic team of different specialists is formed and the procedure for student evaluation, including video examples of the diagnostic process. After completing the webinar, attendees who are ASHA members will receive 0.2 Continuing Education Units (CEU) from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). There is no charge for participating in this webinar. All attendees will receive a certificate of completion.

After this webinar, participants will be able to:

  • Communicate the roles and responsibilities of interprofessional diagnostic team members
  • Describe the process of forming a collaborative team
  • Discuss the diagnostic procedures for the early identification of children at risk for an ASD diagnosis
  • Demonstrate the application of the featured concepts to their respective sites, including barriers and motivators

About the EXTRA CREDIT Summer Series

Special educators spend the school year meeting the constant needs of their students, leaving very little time for professional development. TheEXTRA CREDIT Summer Series is a collection of three free webinars that give special educators the opportunity to hone their skills and earn CEUs from ASHA. The webinars provide expert advice on popular topics of discussion—such as the Common Core State Standards, autism and managing student behavior in the classroom—from a special education perspective. Dr. Barry Prizant will return to PresenceLearning for the third and final webinar in the Summer Series, “Preventing Problem Behavior: An Emotional Regulation Approach,” on Tuesday, August 19, 2014 at 10:00 AM Pacific Time/1:00 PM Eastern Time.

Since 2009, PresenceLearning’s online speech therapy and other related services have provided schools with a practical, affordable new option for service delivery: web-based access to a nationwide network of live, highly qualified, fully licensed speech-language pathologists, occupational therapists and mental health professionals who are available whenever and wherever they are needed. PresenceLearning also offers online assessments for both speech and occupational therapy. By partnering with PresenceLearning, school districts can address capacity issues related to acute and chronic shortages of qualified clinicians, reduce high caseloads for onsite personnel, reduce their backlog of assessments, improve student outcomes and become more efficient. PresenceLearning also offers access to technical specialists, as well as culturally and linguistically diverse clinicians.

About Dr. Kathy Coufal

Dr. Kathy Coufal has been a professor and the Department Chair the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Wichita State University (WSU) since 2006. She serves as a member of the college of Health Profession’s Executive Council, the Executive Committee for Bioengineering, the WSU Research Council, the Advisory Council for CCSR, the Board of Trustees for Heartspring and the Board of Directors for the Society for Children with Challenges, and has served on both the Faculty Senate and Graduate Council.

Previous academic experiences include 16 years at the University of Nebraska-Omaha (UNO), where Dr. Coufal served as faculty member and Program Director. Prior to her appointment at UNO, she directed the Early Intervention Program for the Omaha Public Schools. Her research interests include language development and disorders in infants, toddlers and preschoolers, and service delivery to young children and families. She held a joint appointment in Psychology at UNO and teaches in psycholinguistics, early development and disorders, research methodology and professional collaboration. She is a Fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) and a Board Certified Specialist in Child Language. Dr. Coufal has held numerous leadership positions in state, national and international professional associations.

About Dr. Trisha Self

Dr. Trisha Self is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Wichita State University. She teaches courses, supervises and conducts research in ASD. She is a Board Certified Child Language Specialist with almost 30 years of experience working with children demonstrating complex communication needs, including ASD. She is also a member of the Kansas Governor’s Commission on Autism.

About PresenceLearning

PresenceLearning ( is the leading telehealth network of providers of clinical services and assessments to educational organizations. The PresenceLearning care network has provided over one million sessions of live, online speech-language therapy, occupational therapy, behavioral interventions and mental health services, diagnostic services and assessments, and early childhood services for children with special needs.


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