Alternative Communication Services: CART

Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) is a transcription service that can be used for events such as conferences calls, conventions, webinars, presentations, classes, training sessions, meetings, and corporate events.  Using this service, a specially trained, NCRA-certified, court reporter captures 100% of the conversation in real time (only a 2-3 second delay).  On average, these writers can type 225+ words per minute with 98.5% accuracy.  CART can be used on a laptop, smartphone, or tablet, and can be accessed through Skype, a phone line, or an internet connection. 

The customer has the choice of having a writer work remotely via the web or onsite (two hour minimum for onsite, one hour minimum for remote). There are over 100 CART writers on staff from all over the country, and services can be scheduled in 30 minutes or less.  By the end of the day, the customer can have a roughly edited transcript in Word document form.  While the FAAST staff was tuned in this morning to a CART demonstration, we realized that this would be a great way to keep minutes in meetings.

In addition to being convenient and accurate, CART is also secure.  CART uses a secure HTTP SSL site, comparable to e-commerce sites.  Users must have login information (password) to access the service, and the CART writers send encrypted text directly to the user.  CART also gives the user the option to not store any sensitive data after the meeting is completed.

Why is this service important and useful?  CART’s transcription service makes it easy for everyone to follow along in a meeting, including people that are deaf/heard of hearing and/or do not speak English as a first language.  CART transcription is also still incredibly accurate if the speaker has an accent.  People unable to attend the meeting can get a transcription, and a speaker or company can have something tangible to archive to document the event.  CART is also an affordable service. There are no long-term commitments or contracts, and flexible payment options and negotiable pricing are available upon request.

If you have any questions or would like more information about this service, please visit, or contact Valerie Stafford-Mallis via phone at 800-335-0911 x706 or via e-mail at


Upcoming Webinars in 2014

Here at FAAST, we love to get the word out about Assistive Technology (AT) training, professional development, and education.  There are many webinars at about AT coming up in the latter half of 2014 that we think you should know about.

Upcoming Webinar from ODEP and LEAD Center to Celebrate the Olmstead Anniversary

One of the most historic legal decisions affecting the civil rights of people with disabilities celebrated its 15th anniversary on June 22nd. In 1999, the U.S. Supreme Court rendered the landmark decision in the Olmstead v. L.C. case, requiring states to eliminate the segregation of people with disabilities and ensure that people with disabilities receive services in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs. To celebrate this landmark decision and reflect on the past, present and future of Olmstead, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, in coordination with the LEAD Center, will present an Olmstead Anniversary Webinar Event on July 16th from 3:00 – 4:30 p.m. Eastern.

Click here for more info.

FCC to Host Free Event on Making Social Media Accessible for People with Disabilities – July 17

The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC)  Accessibility and Innovation Initiative is hosting an event called “Accessing Social Media” on July 17, 2014 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the FCC Headquarters in Washington, DC. Watch the event live via webcast on July 17. After the event, there will be demonstrations of accessible technology solutions in the FCC’s Technology Experience Center.

Webinars from AbleNet University

AbleNet University has 13 webinars from July to October.  These webinars cover a wide variety of subjects, including power wheelchairs, SGDs, education, and mobile devices.  Best of all, the webinars are free! You can also search past webinars that have been recorded. 

Click here to browse the upcoming webinars from AbleNet University.

Two Upcoming Webinar Series for AT Act Programs: AT & Employment and AT & Education
The RESNA Catalyst Project is bringing two separate webinar series to all AT Act Programs in the coming months.  Below are descriptions for each series.

AT & Employment Series:  This six part series presented by Ron Hager, National Disabilities Rights Network (NDRN), and Jim Sheldon, NLS, will offer 75 minute webinars on a host of AT and Employment related topics: 
Webinar One: Wednesday, June 25, 2014 –
Obtaining or Retaining Medicaid While Working:  The Section 1619(b) and Medicaid Buy-In for Working People Programs. Archive at:
Webinar Two: Wednesday, July 23, 2014, Funding Work-Related Assistive Technology for the Transition-Aged Special Education Student. Register at:
Webinar Three: Wednesday, September 17, 2014, State Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies:  Using VR Agency to Fund Assistive Technology to Support a Work Goal. Register at:
Webinar Four: Wednesday, October 22, 2014, SSI’s Plan for Achieving Self Support:  Using the PASS to Fund Assistive Technology to Support a Work Goal. Register at:
Webinar Five: Wednesday, November 19, 2014, A Review of Lesser Known Funding Sources and Funding Strategies for Work-Related Assistive Technology. Register at:
Webinar Six: (Recently added!) Wednesday, December 10, 2014, Funding of Work-Related Assistive Technology through Medicaid and Medicaid Waivers. Registration coming soon.

Note: Each AT & Employment Webinar will start at 2p.m. Eastern Time and run for 75 minutes.  In addition, the RESNA Catalyst Project will provide captioning. RESNA CEUs will be available for this series for a $16 fee.

AT & Education Series:
  This two part series presented by Janice Carson, Idaho Statewide AT Program, Ron Hager, NDRN, and Dave Edyburn, Professor, Department of Exceptional Education, University of Wisconsin will offer two 60 minute webinars on assessments, AT, and education.
Webinar One: Monday, August 4, 2014. A Historical Background of Scholastic Assessments and the use of Assistive Technology in the United States
Webinar Two: Monday September 9, 2014, AT, Accessibility, and High-Stakes Assessments

Note: These webinars will start at 3p.m. Eastern Time and run for 60 minutes.  In addition, the RESNA Catalyst Project will provide captioning.  Look for registration details in the coming months. 

Please feel free to comment with links to any AT-related webinars that we missed!