Open Hands Open Access: Deaf-Blind Intervention Modules

Module 07: Emergent Communication

PaTTAN - Online Course

Session Dates

Friday February 03, 2023 - PaTTAN - Online Course
Sunday June 18, 2023 - PaTTAN - Online Course

This event is by invitation only. You must have a registration key in order to register.

This course is a companion to Module 6 ("Basic Communication Principles"). Together they introduce emergent communication. As you learned in Module 6, "emergence" means a gradual beginning or coming forth; a rising to the surface. These courses are about how to help communication emerge in students who are deaf-blind. The information presented in this course builds gradually. The concepts in each learning activity build on those presented in prior learning activities. It is extremely important that you complete the activities in order.


Participants will:

  • Classify "movements," "sounds," and "touching objects," and recognize them as meaningful, concrete, purposeful behaviors.
  • Design and demonstrate "shared experiences" with a student.
  • Review how experiences leave bodily-emotional traces in the memory and how students express these memory traces in their behavior.
  • Identify strategies that can be used to co-create shared meaning of a student’s expressions and develop gestures, meaningful sounds, and objects of reference (object cues).
  • Explain strategies that can be used to develop gestures, meaningful sounds, and objects of reference (object cues) based on the intervener´s forms of communication.
  • List the steps that need to be taken to expand concrete communication forms before moving on to abstract communication forms.

Target Audience

Teams and Individuals working with and/or interested in professional development regarding students who are deaf-blind, such as parents, teachers, paraprofessionals, administrators, and other service providers, including those who are not seeking to become interveners.

Topics Covered: Deaf-Blind

Event Info

Event Type:

On-line Courses

Credit Type:

Act 48 Clock Hour
Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf
Hours of Instructional Time
No credit


PaTTAN Educational Consultant

Event Contact:


Lorraine Byer

Content Contact:

Patti McGowan

Additional Info

This module is part of the Open Hands Open Access Intervener Learning Modules (OHOA) series; you must be an OHOA cohort participant to register. The PA Deaf-Blind Project runs a training of the OHOA modules with a new cohort beginning periodically.  Please contact Patti McGowan or Lorraine Byer for more information about the OHOA modules.