Online training for
Special Educational Needs
Main Telephone NumberMain: +44 (0)1273 900053|Training Telephone NumberTraining: +44 (0)1273 900224|Contact your regional support team
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Courses for ACT

ACT Government

Education and training for Australian Capital Territory.

www.act.gov.au/ Opens in new window

Image of booksThe online courses are delivered through a supported training model. This model includes tutor-led sessions for discussions, presentations and sharing of resources as well as self-paced individual study.

Each course runs over a period of 8 - 10 weeks. Participants join a cohort of up to twelve people led by a trained tutor. Participants join a cohort of up to twelve people led by a trained tutor. ACT courses are accredited by the ACT Teacher Quality Institute for 6 hours of professional learning time and teachers may claim an additional 5 hours of teacher identified professional learning time.

What courses are available?

Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorders / ASD

View course outline

In many classrooms there are students who may:

  • have difficulty communicating and relating to others
  • have behaviours and interests that are restricted and repetitive
  • appear distressed over changes in routine
  • be overly sensitive to some sounds, movements, smells and tastes
  • appear to be unaware or insensitive to the feelings of others

These students may have an autism spectrum disorder and as the term suggests they may have a range of abilities that vary from those with severe intellectual disability through to individuals with exceptional abilities.

Autism spectrum disorder is a lifelong developmental disability and students, whatever their level of functioning, may need support and adjustments in the school and classroom environments. This course aims to support teachers in making their classrooms more inclusive for all students by providing an understanding of the impact of this disability. It offers practical and achievable assessment ideas and intervention strategies to address a range of specific, identified needs.

Understanding Dyslexia and Significant Difficulties in Reading / DYS

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Students who experience dyslexia or other significant difficulties in learning to read may struggle across all the key learning areas. An understanding of how these difficulties can impact on student learning and educational outcomes is important for all teachers. It will assist you to both adjust your teaching to meet the needs of these students and to make a difference to their learning outcomes.

This course provides participants with an understanding of:

  • the causes, incidence and main characteristics of dyslexia
  • some of the issues surrounding dyslexia and significant difficulties in reading
  • how to carry out an individual reading assessment and monitor student progress
  • the importance of a whole school approach to teaching reading and providing additional support
  • a range of practical strategies to teach the critical aspects of reading
  • how to individualise the class reading program
  • how to support learning across the curriculum and use assistive technology effectively

Understanding and Supporting Behaviour / USB

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Students who experience behaviour difficulties can struggle to access learning and to feel socially included in school life. The key message of this course is that behaviour is learnt and more appropriate behaviour can be supported in a positive way.

This course provides participants with an understanding of:

  • what is meant by difficult behaviour
  • how teacher practice can influence student behaviour
  • the need to consistently develop students’ understanding of themselves and others
  • the appropriate behaviours and skills that allow inclusion in learning
  • positive classroom management practices that support the learning, behaviour management and inclusion of all students

Understanding Motor Coordination Difficulties / MCD

View course outline

Motor coordination difficulties can be a complex area:

  • The term ‘hidden disabilities’ is often used as many students may be capable of learning at their stage levels but their motor difficulties can impact on their academic performance
  • Different terminology may be used including developmental coordination disorder or dyspraxia
  • There may be other co-occurring difficulties in addition to fine and gross motor skills such as speech and language difficulties, poor organisational skills, challenging behaviour and social difficulties
  • There are degrees of motor coordination difficulty

A motor coordination difficulty is a lifelong developmental disability. This course aims to support teachers in making their classrooms more inclusive for all students by providing an understanding of the impact of this disability. It offers practical and achievable assessment ideas and intervention strategies to address a range of specific, identified needs.

Inclusion of students with Speech, Language and Communication Needs / SLCN

View course outline

In many classrooms there are students who may have difficulties:

  • understanding, following and giving directions
  • using a wide range of appropriate vocabulary
  • expressing needs, ideas and information
  • sequencing and prioritising tasks, negotiating with others and working in groups

Students who have significant difficulties with speech and language can present with a wide range of additional learning needs and problematic behaviours and they will often have difficulties accessing the curriculum due to limited reading, writing and spelling skills.

This course aims to support teachers in making their classrooms more inclusive for all students by providing an understanding of the impact of speech, language and communication needs. It offers practical and achievable assessment ideas and intervention strategies to address a range of specific, identified needs.

Understanding Hearing Loss / UHL

View course outline

Students with hearing loss may have difficulties in acquiring language and literacy skills which may impact on their ability to access content across the key learning areas. An understanding of the effect hearing loss can have on student learning is important for all teachers. This course will assist teachers to provide adjusted learning and support to meet the needs of these students and to make a difference to their learning outcomes.

This course provides participants with an understanding of:

  • how the ear works and what we mean by hearing loss
  • the possible effects of a hearing loss on a student’s academic, social and communication skills
  • the range of assessment strategies to assess hearing, listening skills, language skills, the classroom environment and appropriate technology
  • the importance of a whole school approach to supporting all students with hearing loss
  • a range of teaching strategies to support learning across the curriculum and to maintain a positive learning environment

Understanding Personalised Learning and Support / PL

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In any group of students there will be a range of diverse learning needs. Personalising learning for all students, including those with disability and additional learning needs, should take into account these individual differences. Personalised learning and support to meet these diverse needs should be reflected in the quality of the learning experience which is offered to each individual student.

This course focuses on:

  • personalising learning and support as it applies to all students, with a focus on those with disability and additional learning needs
  • developing a collaborative, whole-school approach that provides rigorous, relevant and engaging learning programs for all students
  • providing assessment processes and teaching and learning activities that are adjusted to meet the specific needs of those students
  • building supportive learning environments that offer a range of effective teaching strategies and adjustments to improve outcomes for all students
  • understanding your responsibilities as a teacher under the Disability Standards for Education (2005)

Check on [email protected] Opens in new window for courses in your local area or contact the local coordinator.

Each course has four main elements:

  • Understanding
  • Assessment
  • Interventions
  • Case studies

The content is presented in a variety of ways to accommodate different learning preferences. All courses include interactions, printable resources, animations and videos.

There a number of quizzes throughout the course, and as a participant you must contribute to forums, goals and interventions as part of the course requirements.

View sample pages from each course by clicking on the sample link in the course information above.

What is the feedback?

Those who have completed the courses rate them very highly in terms of the impact of the courses on extending knowledge, skills and confidence in supporting students with special needs.

How do I join a course?

ACT Education and Training Directorate personnel can enquire about the courses through a regional contact listed below. Staff can identify professional learning opportunities through the Professional Learning and Events Calendar (PLEC) Opens in new window using “Equity and diversity’ as the learning focus area.

Region Regional contact name Tel Email
Belconnen Network Colette Brown 6205 6792 colette.brown@ed.act.edu.au
Name Role Org Tel Email
Colette Brown Network Consultant ACT Central Office 6205 6792 colette.brown@ed.act.edu.au
Ros Macafee Regional Management ACT Central Office 62054633 Rosslyn.macafee@act.gov.au
Catriona Meere Regional Management ACT Central Office 0432891543 catriona.meere@act.gov.au
Carmel Blake Other ACT Central Office 0468713259 keepcarm.consulting@gmail.com
Tamara Hore Other ACT Central Office 0 tamara.hore@ed.act.edu.au