Crime and Inclusion – People with Disabilities Deserve the Opportunity to Live Independently in the Community with Their Peers.

In an op-ed in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the state director of The Arc Wisconsin addressed the brutal attack on a Chicago teenager with disabilities and urged that it not be used to make the case against community inclusion. Her comments were in response to a commentary that proffered the logic that the horrific incident… Read more

Category: Mental Health

Equity, Equality, and Inclusion

In her recent novel, “small great things,” author Jodi Picoult addressed the difference between equality and equity. As one of the author’s character explained it: “Equality is treating everyone the same. But equity is taking differences into account, so everyone has a chance to succeed.” She goes on to say that the former seems fair,… Read more

Bullying Prevention: Teaching Our Youth To Embrace Their Differences

October was anti-bullying month, so naturally we at DirectCourse thought this would be a good time to talk about this issue, and how it may affect people with disabilities. Research suggests that children with physical, developmental, intellectual, emotional, and sensory disabilities are more likely to be bullied than their peers. According to a study conducted… Read more

Why It’s Important to Keep Our Direct Support Staff Happy

Direct service professionals are an often-overlooked specialty in need of tolerant, good-natured workers; those who can provide the delicate care needed to keep up with the various challenges that are unique to clients with disabilities. Perhaps at DirectCourse we are a little biased, but we believe direct care staff might be one of the most… Read more

The 26th Anniversary of the ADA: Progress and Lingering Obstacles

Last month marked the 26th Anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by President H.W. Bush in 1990. A law that ensured that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else; giving civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities similar to those provided to individuals on the… Read more

More than a wheelchair; Emojis to better represent people with disablilties

Every day, billions of emojis are sent back and forth on social media applications and have come to play a quite significant role in the world of text communication. There has been quite a bit of initiative to make emojis more diverse, to depict people with different skin tones and same sex couples and so on; however,… Read more

Admin Corner – Nov/Dec 2015

NEW Courses Now Available! We have released two new courses, one in College of Employment Services and the other in College of Recovery and Community Inclusion. Customers of the applicable content areas will automatically receive the new content, and free demo’s of the content are available to anyone interested (contact us here for details). College… Read more

Admin Corner – Sept/Oct 2015

Upcoming Therap Conferences Therap Services, LLC. is a web-based service organization that provides an integrated solution for documentation, reporting and communication needs of agencies providing support to people with developmental disabilities. We will be leading sessions about Improving Implementation, Meeting Compliance and Regulations, Using the Therap Bridge, and more at these upcoming Therap conferences. We… Read more

Community Inclusion is Changing the Field of Psychiatric Rehabilitation

The community mental health field has a long history of trying to meet the needs of people with serious mental health conditions and in trying to help them become active members of their community, whether it’s helping them find jobs, get educated, or the myriad ways in which we all try to have a personally… Read more

Category: Mental Health

Arc of Minnesota Provides DirectCourse Training to Families for Free

This past February, The Arc of Minnesota partnered with the University of Minnesota and DirectCourse to make four online curricula available to Minnesota families and people with disabilities absolutely free. The Arc of Minnesota is a private, non-profit statewide voluntary organization that provides advocacy work and education that will further the efforts of inclusion and integration for people… Read more

Google Impact Challenge Seeks to Make Technology More Accessible for Everyone

According to statistics from the World Health Organization, over one billion people on Earth have some form of disability. If you have a disability, know or work with someone with a disability, the reality you face every day is one of limited accessibility and opportunity. And sometimes, barriers for people with disabilities exist simply due… Read more

A review of our conversation at #NatCon15!

We had a great time at the National Council of Behavioral Health Conference this year (see the photos below for proof!). Thank you to everyone who joined our conversation about the importance of community inclusion for people with mental health conditions. Here’s what you had to say in response to our polls!     Check… Read more

Category: Mental Health

Forthcoming CRCI Course Will Help Behavioral Health Workers Identify Trauma and Work within a Trauma Informed Approach

This summer, DirectCourse: College of Recovery and Community Inclusion (CRCI) will launch a new course on the basics of understanding trauma. The course, Trauma Matters: Providing Trauma Informed Supports and Services, will consist of twelve lessons, and help learners understand trauma, its impacts and prevalence, and trauma-informed care. Karen Johnson is Director of Trauma-Informed Services… Read more

Category: Mental Health

New Crosswalks, CDS featured in NASDDDS Newsletter, and more!

March/April 2015 Connections Admin Corner The College of Direct Support was featured in the January 2015 issue of the National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services (NASDDDS) Newsletter for exciting findings from the UMN Research and Training Center on Community Living  – click here to view! The Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS) funded… Read more

2014 Year in Review

As we start the New Year, the DirectCourse team has been reflecting upon a successful 2014, surrounded by friends, old and new. We invite you to share in our reflection – check out this video we made! Happy New Year!

Recent Webinar Examines Methods to Support County-Level Change in the Mental Health Workforce

Mental Health Workforce Development in 2015 and Beyond Strategies to Support Change for County Level Administrators from Elsevier Clinical Solutions on Vimeo.   This past December, DirectCourse/College of Recovery and Community Inclusion (CRCI) hosted an important webinar that examined the need for expanded and improved training for personnel in non-licensed and/or entry-level positions in the… Read more

Category: Mental Health

Recreational Therapy May Reduce Dependence on Antipsychotic Medication

Responding to a 2011 report by the Office of the Inspector General which revealed that nursing homes across the country were using atypical antipsychotic medications to treat residents with dementia, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) created the National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care. Using these atypical antipsychotic medications for “off label” uses (e.g., they… Read more

Category: Mental Health

Focusing on the Whole Individual is One Key to Long-Term Health

According to recent statistics cited by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), persons with mental health issues and substance abuse disorders often die many years earlier than the average person—from fifteen to twenty-five on up to thirty-plus years earlier in some states. Chronic illnesses such as hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease… Read more

Category: Mental Health

Elsevier’s PolicyNavigator Streamlines Training

This July, Elsevier launched PolicyNavigator, an efficient and flexible management tool that pairs perfectly with Elsevier Performance Manager – the platform on which most DirectCourse users access their content.  PolicyNavigator can further productivity by making it easier for organizations to train and communicate with employees. With PolicyNavigator, documents of all kinds are available instantly. Too… Read more

Admin. Corner: New courses, sunset courses, and an exclusive webinar with Nancy Thaler!

Did you miss our webinar with Nancy Thaler?  Don’t worry – we recorded it. Check it out here: “Future Needs of Caregivers in the Home” with Nancy Thaler, Executive Director of NASDDDS In case you missed it – we’ve added several new courses this year!  Click on the titles below to learn more about each one.… Read more

New DirectCourse Webinar Focuses on Future Needs of Caregivers in the Home

DirectCourse is proud to present the recording of its latest webinar, Future Needs of Caregivers in the Home, presented by Nancy Thaler, Executive Director of the National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services (NASDDS). According to recent studies noted in the webinar, almost 40% of all adult Americans are caring for someone disabled… Read more

New DirectCourse Video!

Thank you to all participants in the making of our new video, which is now posted on our website: Ben Woodworth, Director of Training, Iowa Association of Community Providers Megan Hartwig, Technical Assistance Specialist, Iowa Association of Community Providers Judith Dotzman, Executive Director, SPIN Lucy Corker, Director, Professional Development, SPIN Erica Lowry, Direct Support Professional, SPIN Taryn Garvin, Direct Support Professional, SPIN… Read more

New! DirectCourse Admin. Training

We are proud to announce that Elsevier’s Customer Support Team is providing training directed to clients using DirectCourse products on a bi-monthly basis, as of this April! Please check your inbox for a list of upcoming sessions that we’ve designed to ensure you are getting the most from our learning management system delivering the content… Read more

Individual Placement and Support Means Better Jobs and Happier Clients

A person seeking vocational rehabilitation (VR) services often has to go through a lengthy process before finding work—assessments, evaluations, and tests to ensure readiness. The VR specialist often works with people who face significant barriers to employment, and they want to make sure that the person can succeed on the job, a process that often… Read more

Category: Mental Health

Certified Peer Specialists are Changing the Face of the Mental Health System

As the nation’s mental health system undergoes enormous changes, from transition to a recovery and community inclusion model, to the passage of the Affordable Care Act (to name just a few), the use of Certified Peer Specialists (CPS) has become commonplace. “A CPS is a person who has experienced a mental health or substance abuse… Read more

Category: Mental Health

DirectCourse – Frequently Asked Questions

You have questions – we have answers! Here are some of the most frequently asked questions that we receive, as well as our responses. How are your curricula developed? Will your curriculum help me meet my state standards? Do I receive a certificate upon completion of each lesson? I want to incorporate my current training… Read more

Self-Directed Care: Empowering People

For over a decade, mental health advocates have been arguing for the adoption of self-directed care for individuals using Medicare and Medicaid services. Furthermore, in 2003, President Bush’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health issued a report urging people (and their families) play a much larger role in utilizing their health care dollars.

Category: Mental Health

The State of Mental Health Has Improved But Still Faces Challenges

The passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990 (ADA) and the Olmstead Decision in 1999 established community integration as a right of people with psychiatric disabilities.  Since then, greater attention has been paid to the facilitating the ability of people with psychiatric disabilities to fully engage in meaningful activities in their communities. However,… Read more

Category: Mental Health

New Savings Calculator Helps Set Training Budget

Whether the economy’s soaring or times are tough, organizations are always seeking ways to cut costs and stretch their budgets whenever, and wherever, possible. With this in mind, DirectCourse has created a “Savings Calculator”, designed to allow potential clients of any of the DirectCourse curricula to determine how much money they will save using our… Read more

College of Recovery and Community Inclusion Launches this October

The College of Recovery and Community Inclusion (CRCI) will be launched on October 14, bringing to community mental health practitioners a new web-based curriculum. Developed in collaboration between the Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities, and the University of Minnesota’s Research and Training Center on Community Living, the CRCI is… Read more

Category: Mental Health

DirectCourse Announces College of Recovery and Community Inclusion

The DirectCourse curricula is expanding in new and exciting ways! This summer sees the launch of the College of Recovery and Community Inclusion (CRCI), an integrated, web-based curriculum designed for community mental health practitioners. Utilizing Elsevier’s web based Performance Manager learning management system. Along with content developed in collaboration by the Temple University Collaborative on… Read more

Category: Mental Health

The Evolution and Vision of the New DirectCourse Curricula

DirectCourse…online curricula for life in community A decade ago the College of Direct Support (CDS) online curriculum was a vision fast becoming reality. Its founder Bill Tapp, DirectCourse Vice President, was working with MC Strategies and the University of Minnesota’s Research and Training Center (RTC) on Community Living to develop an online curriculum to train… Read more

Brew in the Holidays with DirectCourse’s New Website and Branding & Enter to Win a $10 Starbucks Gift Card

The newly designed DirectCourse website, that embraces new branding, was released November 2011. The website that is optimized for organize web searches enables existing and prospective customers and visitors to experience a user-friendly design, easy navigation, and engaging tools that initiate lead generated marketing programs and promotions. Most important, the website houses compelling content centered… Read more

Introducing the New DirectCourse Overbrand: Includes CDS & Evolving Online Curricula in the Disabilities Field

Elsevier’s product line of online training curricula under the brand of DirectCourse will officially launch in November, along with the introduction of its second curriculum – the College of Employment Services (CES). Both will be rolled out during the Alliance for Full Participation Conference Nov. 17-19 in Washington, D.C. DirectCourse is an expanding lineup of… Read more