Advocacy Services: The term “advocacy services,” except as used as part of the term “protection and advocacy services,” means services provided to assist individuals with disabilities and their family members, guardians, advocates, and authorized representatives in accessing assistive technology devices and assistive technology services.

Augmentative and Alternate Communications (AAC) is any device, system, or method that improves the ability of children and youth with communication difficulties to communicate effectively. The purpose of AAC is to increase the individual’s ability to communicate, control the environment, maintain social interactions, and receive and convey information. There are no prerequisites to be met before introducing an AAC system. AAC should be considered for students who:

  • are non-speaking
  • have speech that is unintelligible to most listeners
  • have speech, but require AAC for writing or carrying on long conversations

Assistive Technology means technology designed to be utilized in an assistive technology device or assistive technology service.

Assistive Technology Device means any item, piece of equipment, or product system whether acquired commercially, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities or individuals with disabilities.

Assistive Technology Service The term ‘assistive technology service‘ means any service that directly assists an individual with a disability in the selection, acquisition, or use of an assistive technology device. Such term includes

  • the evaluation of the assistive technology needs of an individual with a disability, including a functional evaluation of the impact of the provision of appropriate assistive technology and appropriate services to the individual in the customary environment of the individual;
  • a service consisting of purchasing, leasing, or otherwise providing for the acquisition of assistive technology devices by individuals with disabilities;
  • a service consisting of selecting, designing, fitting, customizing, adapting, applying, maintaining, repairing, replacing, or donating assistive technology devices;
  • coordination and use of necessary therapies, interventions, or services with assistive technology devices, such as therapies, interventions, or services associated with education and rehabilitation plans and programs;
  • training or technical assistance for an individual with a disability or, where appropriate, the family members, guardians, advocates, or authorized representatives of such an individual;
  • training or technical assistance for professionals (including individuals providing education and rehabilitation services and entities that manufacture or sell assistive technology devices), employers, providers of employment and training services, or other individuals who provide services to, employ, or are otherwise substantially involved in the major life functions of individuals with disabilities; and
  • a service consisting of expanding the availability of access to technology, including electronic and information technology, to individuals with disabilities.

Universal Design means a concept or philosophy for designing and delivering products and services that are usable by people with the widest possible range of functional capabilities, which include products and services that are directly usable (without requiring assistive technology) and products and services that are made usable with assistive technology.

Need More?

Here are some additional resources with on-line glossaries and lists of information.


Revised: 6/25/2014