It is critical that you know what training outcomes the counselor or EAS and the consumer expect. It is equally important that you identify and clarify any differences between these expectations before training starts.
In order for you to be fully prepared to begin training when you arrive at the training site, you must know
- what technology the consumer has, and
- what tasks he or she needs to accomplish using that technology.
When the counselor or EAS refers a consumer for training, be sure to ask what equipment the consumer has received. The consumer’s DARS2014, Rehabilitation Equipment Receipt and Agreement can tell you what equipment has been ordered. You should also discuss the results of the consumer’s baseline assessment (an assessment of the consumer’s current technology skills), if available; the training goals that have been identified; and which training modules you should concentrate on. You may also request information from the Initial Consultation Report or Assistive Technology Evaluation Report, which might provide insight on the consumer’s goals and skills.
You should contact the consumer before you start training to discuss his or her understanding of training expectations and goals. During training the consumer may ask for installation of (or training on) hardware or software that he or she has purchased. Unless you receive prior written permission from the counselor or EAS, do not install or train on any hardware or software (for example, games) unless it is in the referral. Contact the referring counselor, EAS, or back-up counselor to report any issues that arise with the consumer’s computer system whether or not the computer is state-issued.
Assistive technology software may require some time to load or customize configuration files before you can actually start working with the consumer; however, this preparation should not occupy the bulk of the consumer’s training time.
Provide training only on the products, hardware, and software that are on your approved list. If you are asked by a DBS staff member, counselor, or consumer to provide training in other areas, you must inform the requester that you are not allowed to do so.
All requests for training should be in writing. If the counselor requests an exception to approved training, the request must be in writing and approved by the field director. You are expected to be an expert, and you cannot use the consumer’s equipment, software, hardware, or time to learn the program.
Do not use the consumer’s equipment to check your email or conduct personal business. Remember, you are there to provide one-on-one training. Do not place or answer personal calls during training time.