Online Education

The Connections Access Consulting Services online course will provide an array of self-study material and help you examine the misconceptions and stereotypes regarding people living with disabilities and health-related illnesses. It will enhance your learning of how to omit apprehensions and awkward moments in social situations. Most people want to be sensitive and respectful but may not be knowledgeable. We have provided useful tools and strategies to raise your awareness of the largest minority group. It will introduce the constant attitudinal barriers society has placed upon the disability arena. In addition, this course will help you develop skills needed to effectively communicate, interact, and work with people with disabilities and those living with health-related illnesses.

The CACS online program has three levels. In an in-person class forum, these are two-hour sessions. However, online courses will be taken at your chosen time and are more flexible. In addition, each level may have several sections incorporated into the lesson. All course levels should be taken in sequence. Also, at the end of the course, you will receive a certificate of participation.

Overall Course Description & Outline

Level I

Level I offers a comprehensive introduction to the history of the Independent Living Movement and concepts of diversity as it relates to physical (obvious) disabilities. It provides information to raise awareness on the many issues and matters people with disabilities and persons living with health-related illnesses face daily. These sessions provide foundational information on the respective topics and offer opportunities to discuss why these topics are relevant. The lessons explore their revelations in our society and probe personal mindsets and belief systems relating to diversity in the disability arena.

Session 1: The History of the Independent Living Movement

The history of the Independent Living Movement began from the philosophy which states that people with disabilities should have the same rights and choices as all citizens. The Independent Living Movement is closely related to the Civil Rights movements of the early 1950’s and 1960’s among African Americans. In this section information can be acquired by choosing when, what, who, where and how it all began.

Session 2: Creating an Inclusive Environment for All

This session introduces the many facets of disability and raises awareness of how best to interact with people living with disabilities and people with health-related illnesses. It teaches how to use appropriate language when referring to and writing about persons with disabilities and health-related illnesses. This session will also explore stereotypes, myths and facts, and real life situations for consideration, and it will provide effective and respectful ways of communicating. Various exercise scenarios will be added to further enhance your learning experience.

Level II

This level will provide information to raise awareness on disabilities which are not-so-obvious (hidden). With example stories and commentary, you will become more aware of the many facets of hidden disabilities.

Session 1: What does a disability look like, when it’s not so obvious (hidden)?  

In this session, you will discover how to relate to persons with mental illnesses, communicate more effectively with persons with various hidden disabilities, and make distinctions between myths and facts. This session will focus on the individual rather than the disability or medical diagnosis and avoid using inappropriate language. A video presentation will elaborate on sharing what it’s like to experience symptoms of living with mental illnesses. The educational videos will be followed by a three-part quiz to review the information provided.

Level III

This level is geared toward businesses that provide customer service to people with disabilities so they might have barrier-free experiences.  The objective of this session is to increase your knowledge in all facets of the disability arena and to also equip you with the tools required to accomplish the goal of offering adequate customer service when accommodations are needed.

Session 1: How to Provide Customer Service to People with Disabilities

In this session, you will discover practical ways to adapt any store or customer service setting to properly accommodate those with disabilities. Supplemental material is provided in downloadable documents to enhance your learning experience.

Note from Our Consultants

Thank you for visiting Connections Access Consulting Services (CACS) online program. We take this opportunity to welcome you to CACS. Congratulations on your decision to continue learning and acquiring matters of inclusion.

We promote awareness and address the importance of inclusion for individuals with disabilities through training and consulting. We raise awareness of people living with disabilities and health related illnesses, and how society can foster ways in developing an inclusive environment.

As you embark on these online courses, you will become aware of the many facets of people living with disabilities and the aging population.  You will also, learn ways to make the environment inclusive for all.

In many ways, the information acquired online is not different from our in-person classes offered. However, online you may learn at your own pace and time. Additionally, you are able to reaffirm what you acquired by repeating the material frequently. 

As you make the transition through the online experience, most likely you will have questions. Please feel free to contact us with your questions, comments or concerns. We are here to assist.

We hope you will gain satisfactory knowledge and information through these courses and that you will share and suggest to others — information is not any good unless it is shared. Like wild flowers, let the information you receive be used for omitting uncertainty. Our intent is to raise awareness toward the matters of people with disabilities and health-related illnesses. Everyone deserves to be included in all social situations.

MARGUERITE EDMONDS, Training & Educational Coordinator