Felician Autism Collaboration & Technology Conference

Felician Autism Collaboration & Technology Conference

NJ’s leading 1-day conference for autism studies. Learn about the latest resources, technologies, research, and practices by leaders in the field. This conference is for educators, caregivers, therapists, school administrators and parents.


$39.99 by 2/15, $49.99 after 2/15.

Register here


Keynote: A Spectrum of Possibilities

The availability of low-cost AAC Apps has made the iPad a go-to communication solution for many students with autism. Does this go-to solution enable all students to develop the most effective communication possible? This address will review several assessment tools that can used to determine the most appropriate symbol option for each student. A variety of AAC systems will be highlighted including Tangible Symbol Systems, Picture Exchange Communication Systems (PECS), and a range of basic and core-word AAC Apps such as GoTalk Now, LAMP, TouchChat and Proloquo2Go. Examples will be provided to demonstrate how the results from these assessments can be used to match a student’s abilities to the appropriate AAC system, App or device.

Joan Bruno, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

Speech-Language Pathologist

Communication Technology Resources, LLC

Joan Bruno, Ph.D., CCC-SLP Biography

Joan Bruno, Ph.D., CCC-SLP has over 30 years of experience working in the field of Augmentative Communication. She maintains a private practice providing AAC evaluations and consultative services to schools and other agencies. Joan has published and presented nationally and internationally on a variety of topics related to AAC assessment and intervention. She is a Past-President of the New Jersey Speech and Hearing Association, and the United States Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication. Joan is the author of the Gateway to Language and Learning© (Gateway) page set and the Test of Aided-Communication Symbol Performance© (TASP).

Think Different: Literacy and Autism

In a room full of reading experts, you might find a fairly consistent definition of “reading,” but you would likely find as many interpretations of “Literacy” as there are people in the room. During this session we will explore the concept of literacy as it applies to individuals with autism. We will examine the diverse approaches to teaching ‘reading’ as well as expand our thinking to include multiple notions of literacy and how they apply to our students with autism.

Denise Enssiln, M.Ed

Assistant Professor

School of Education, Felician University

Review of Innovative Applications, Core Classroom, Modeling, and More!

This presentation will focus on the following: new innovative applications including Green Screen and Augmented Reality, AAC applications such as Proloquo2Go, Core Classroom by AssistiveWare, modeling techniques, and assessment tools such as the Communication Matrix.

Denene Guidetti, SLP, CCC

Special Education Technology Integration Coach

Clifton Board of Education

Engineering the Environment to Promote AAC Integration at Home and in the Community

This session will address strategies to assist educators, caregivers, and family members to assist an AAC user in utilizing their communication system at home and in the community.  The importance of conversational opportunities, communication intent, and vocabulary selection will be discussed.  In addition, practical implementation approaches that facilitates expression communication and promotes an environment for communication success will be explored.  

Christine Besko-Maughan, M.S.

Adjunct Professor

School of Education, Felician University

Family-Centered Positive Behavior Instructional Supports for Children with Autism

The family-centered positive behavior intervention and support approach brings together professionals and parents as partners in designing and implementing behavior supports for a child with challenging behaviors. Not only is the family viewed as the primary recipient of the services, they are also considered the primary decision makers. The family-centered PBIS is facilitated by a professional, or team of professionals, with expertise and experience in: (1) assessment and intervention strategies of PBIS; (2) child development and education, and; (3) family functioning and systems. In addition, guiding professionals have a background in implementing programs while taking into consideration cultural and other individual family differences.

John C. Burke, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Executive Director, International Center for Autism & disabilities Research in Education

School of Education, Felician University

Michael Farrelly, M.A.

High School Principal

Gramon Family Schools

Building Communication Using Pivotal Response Techniques and Interactive Language Supports

Pivotal Response Teaching is based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and focuses on “Pivotal” skills or behaviors in order to produce more broad changes in a child’s development. Children who participate in PRT often show widespread gains in developing social communication skills. Incorporating Interactive Language Supports within a PRT program can even further increase success for many children. ILS supports help to target attention, receptive language and listening skills, as well as more complex expressive language that can be used in social and academic settings. Practical methods with multiple examples will be incorporated with opportunities for active participation of attendees.

Stephanie McGowan, Ed.D.


School of Education Felician University

John C. Burke, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Executive Director, International Center for Autism & disabilities Research in Education

School of Education, Felician University


Learning for Life

The Transition and Community Based Instruction Programs focus on “Learning for Life” for young adults ages 18-21 with special needs. The programs focus on social skills and work related skills necessary for transitioning into post-graduate years. Students are exposed to community settings which will foster their independence and, with the support and guidance of the transition coordinator, provide some insight into their future.  Inevitably, these students will turn 21.  Once they reach this pivotal milestone, their entitlement to services provided by the Department of Education are lost, and they will be transferred to the Division of Developmental Disabilities.  This transition, although overwhelming, can be very rewarding, opening doors to experiences in various areas.  All individuals will have access to programs providing services in areas such as Day Habilitation, Prevocational Training and Community Integration.  Moreover, individuals will have the freedom to choose which areas they would like to explore. 

Danielle Savastano SLE/CESP

Transition Coordinator/Adult Prep Coordinator

The Felician School for Exceptional Children

Dana Regan


The Felician 21 and Over Program


  • 8:15 – 8:40am : Registration and coffee
  • 8:45- 10:00am : Keynote
  • 10:15 – 11:15am : Session A
  • 11:30am – 12:30pm : Session B
  • 12:30pm – 1:30pm : Lunch
  • 1:45pm - 2:45pm : Session C
  • 3:00pm – 3:30pm : Wrap Up and Door Prizes