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Peer Review

Alphabet Soup: Disability Related Acronyms



Overall Numeric Rating:

4.17 stars
Content Quality: 4 stars
Effectiveness: 4 stars
Ease of Use: 4.5 stars
Reviewed: Jul 25, 2003 by Teacher Education
Overview: This site provides a quick guide to some of the more common acronyms in
disability education, law, medicine, and rehabilitation. Medical and
psychological tests and medications are not covered. Terms are listed
alphabetically, and additional resource links are provided for each acronym.
Type of Material: Resource
Recommended Uses: This site seems most appropriate for families and clients new to the field of
disability. However, teachers in training may find this site useful,
particularly those pursuing credentials in general education. Instructors can
encourage Special and General Education teachers, administrators, or anyone who
works with a child with a disability (including parents) to access this site to
clarify the vast array of acronyms often used in these fields. Additionally,
this site can be given as the starting point for students doing research on
identified fields related to special education.
Technical Requirements: None; however, numerous links are provided for further investigation. Links are
identified in blue and are easy to access. The requirements for each link vary
with the most common being additional plug-ins such as Adobe Acrobat.
Identify Major Learning Goals: The major learning goal of this site is to learn the meanings of many
disability-related acronyms. Participants can look up acronyms frequently used
in medical and/or disability-related fields. For the majority of acronyms
defined, links are included to provide the learner with additional information
in that particular subject area.
Target Student Population: Anyone wanting to become more familiar with the "alphabet soup" of
disability-related terms will enjoy this site. Students who want or need to
understand and use acronyms often bandied about in Special Education or related
areas will find this site helpful. Instructors will appreciate this site for the
additional links provided for students to begin more in-depth investigation
into particular areas of interest.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: No prior knowledge of Special Education is required. Also, no technology skills
other than basic Web site navigational abilities are required.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4 stars
Strengths: Given that understanding the acronyms often used in Special Education and
disability-related fields is core knowledge for many teachers who work with
students who have disabilities, this is an excellent reference site. It is easy
to use for the beginning learner and provides extensive links for more advanced
learners. Numerous terms are presented in a clear, easy to read format.
Subsequent definitions are clear.
Concerns: The site has not been updated since 3/2000. Many terms/acronyms are listed with
no link connecting to a definition.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 4 stars
Strengths: As a teaching tool, the material on this site would be useful for those new to
any disability-related profession. The site is created to provide beginning
level information on frequently used acronyms. An instructor could use the site
creatively by providing students with a set of acronyms to look up, identify,
and then research to present back to peers. The additional sites linked to most
acronyms are what add dimension to this site.
Concerns: The site is limited in scope with a major focus on medical issues. Some areas
are weak and do not have additional links. For example, there is very little in
the area of behavior or emotional disabilities.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4.5 stars
Strengths: This site is very easy to navigate. The main page is laid out in a simple,
colorful, easily readable format. Links within site all work logically and are
marked in blue. Sites associated with official organizations are additionally
marked with a red star. Extra information is available in the forms of
Dictionary, Statistics, and State Resources links.
Concerns: There is no search function available. Multiple links provide extensive
information but can cause a user to become lost as they maneuver around the site
if they are not familiar with this type of activity.

Other Issues and Comments: The site needs to be updated, with more links added as acronyms continue to grow
in number.