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Continuing Education

2023 Sol Adler Memorial Conference


Monday, March 27, 2023
7:30 am – 4:15 pm
UT Conference Center, 4th Floor


Creating Learning Environments for Autistic Children;
Using the SCERTS framework to enhance active engagement

Presented by:

Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP


Creating Learning Environments for Autistic Children;
Using the SCERTS framework to enhance active engagement

Presented by:
Emily Rubin, MS, CC-SLP

Emily Rubin, MS, CC-SLP
Emily Rubin, MS, CC-SLP

Emily Rubin is the Director of Communication Crossroads in Atlanta, GA, a private practice specialized in providing professional learning focused on helping families, caregivers, and educators create positive learning environments focused on relationships and an appreciation of the neurodiversity of children. She is a speech-language pathologist who is passionate about the relationship between social emotional engagement and the development of language, learning, and well-being. She is a co-author of the SCERTS Model and a co-developer of the Social Emotional Engagement – Knowledge and Skills learning that are: 1) ecologically valid to the demands of achieving academic standards, 2) sensitive to the unique needs of students with social learning differences such as autism, and 3) can serve as a universal design for learning that benefits all of the students and young children in order to promote positive long-term outcomes. She lectures internationally and provides ongoing technical assistance to school systems and other agencies that care for children and their families.

Findings of research in social neuroscience foster our ability to appreciate the neurodivergent learning styles of our autistic learners. This knowledge can influence how we create learning environments that promote active engagement in the children that we support. Starting with a discussion of social neurodevelopment, we will shift toward how our educational and therapeutic goals should be written as a partnership where child-centered and developmentally sensible priorities are addressed by emphasizing the responsibility of the interactive partner. Using the SCERTS framework, goals that address child and family centered priorities, match neurodevelopmental needs, and promote active engagement will be shared.

Agenda and Disclosures

Conference Agenda

7:30 am – 8:15 am
Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:15 am – 8:30 am
Welcome and Introductions
8:30 am – 10:00 am
Current developments in social neuroscience – Why we play an essential role in creating learning environments that are supportive to neurodiverse learners.
10:00 am – 10:15 am
10:15 am – 11:45 am
Enhancing active engagement – Writing goals that address child-centered, developmentally sensible goals that address the role of interactive partners.
11:45 am – 1:00 pm
Lunch Provided On Site
1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Professional Panel Rotation 1
2:30 pm – 2:45 pm
2:45 pm – 4:15 pm
Professional Panel Rotation 2


ASHA CE Approved Provider | University of Tennessee, Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology

This course is offered for 0.60 ASHA CEUs Intermediate Level

Course Objectives:

    1. Use key concepts from research in neurodevelopment that can bolster our efforts to advocate for autistic children,
    2. Describe goals that address child and family centered priorities, match neurodevelopmental needs, and promote active engagement,
    3. Identify essential changes in the learning environments and interpersonal support that enhance active engagement in autistic learners.


Financial: Emily Rubin is receiving a fee for speaking in today's educational activity. She is a salaried employee at Communication Crossroads in Atlanta, GA. As a co-developer of Social Emotional Engagement – Knowledge and Skills (SEE-KS), she owns intellectual property rights and, as a co-author of SCERTS manuals, she receives royalties from Brookes Publishing Company.

Non-financial: Emily Rubin is an advisory committee member for National Autism Leadership Collaborative.

Panel Participant:

    • Emily Rubin – Featured Speaker
    • Katie Mears – Speech-Language Pathologist Assistant–No financial or non-financial disclosures
    • Lydia Barry – Speech-Language Pathologist; Director of the UTHSC Pediatric Language Clinic – Financial Disclosure (receives salary from UTHSC); No non-financial disclosures
    • Kaitlyn Hardy – Parent of a child with Autism–No financial or non-financial disclosures
Registration Form

About the Sol Adler Memorial Conference

Sol Adler
Dr. Sol Adler

Dr. Sol Adler was a professor at UT ASP. Dr. Adler joined the faculty in 1967. He was nationally recognized for his work in pediatric language disorders and was the first director of the UT Medical Center's Speech and Hearing Clinic.

In 1972, he founded the UT Pediatric Language Center because of his interest in developmental language disorders. Dr. Adler wrote 14 books and numerous articles on speech and hearing disorders. In 1975, he was named a fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing-Association and the Council for Exceptional Children's Division of Children with Communicative Disorders. Dr. Adler also received an award for outstanding clinical achievement from the American Speech and Hearing Foundation in 1984. Dr. Adler died at the age of 68 on February 14, 1993.

The purpose of the Sol Adler Memorial Conference, held each spring, is to provide an annual conference on current issues of interest to professionals who provide clinical services in speech pathology and audiology and to those who conduct research in communication sciences and disorders. The conference is sponsored by the Sol Adler Lecture Series Endowment and is presented in honor of Dr. Adler's love of the fields of audiology and speech pathology.

Tom Davidson Memorial Conference

Tom Davidson
Dr. Tom Davidson

Dr. Thomas Davidson, Professor Emeritus, was a native Tennessean and beloved professor at UT ASP. After his time at UT, he moved to Florida where he was Director of the Hearing and Noise Control Center in Jacksonville and a salesperson for several hearing-aid companies. However, of all Dr. Davidson’s professional accomplishments, his work with students at UT was what he enjoyed most. In 1997, he and his wife, Vicki, a fellow audiologist, established the Tom Davidson Audiology Scholarship Endowment which has generously supported students pursuing graduate degrees in Audiology. Since Dr. Davidson’s death in 2003, his daughter, Leigh Davidson Seaman, continue to support the legacy he created. Despite all that he did for our department, Dr. Davidson was never comfortable accepting singular recognition for his contributions to graduate education and insisted that he was one of many who made UT ASP the high quality training program it is today.

The Tom Davidson Memorial Conference, held each fall, was first held in 2013 and its purpose is twofold, to: 

  • honor Dr. Davidson’s memory by creating an annual conference on current issues of interest to professionals who provide clinical services in audiology; and 
  • recognize other individuals (faculty or staff emeritus) who were as dedicated as Dr. Davidson to the field of audiology and the education of audiology students. 

Feb 15, 2023