Institute on Communication and Inclusion

For almost 20 years, the Institute on Communication and Inclusion (ICI) has been giving a voice and a means to communicate to people with disabilities who may have otherwise been living in silence or isolation by conducting research and promoting support for people with disabilities to communicate in schools and society. Formerly called the Facilitated Communication Institute, our updated name represents a broadened focus, reflecting lines of research, training and public dissemination that focus on school and community inclusion, narratives of disability and ability, and disability rights.

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A Reminder about Training and Practice Standards

During the ongoing facilitated communication training process, it is imperative that facilitators and FC users maintain consistency in adhering to standards of best practice. Click here for updated information on these training standards and principles. 

2016 Summer Institute

The 2016 ICI Summer Institute was held July 26-28 at the Sheraton Columbia Town Center Hotel in Columbia, Maryland in collaboration with the Hussman Foundation.

Invitation to Participate in a Research Study

The Institute on Communication and Inclusion (ICI) in Syracuse, NY and the Hussman Institute for Autism in Baltimore, MD are conducting a collaborative analysis of IEPs (Individualized Education Plans) of students with intellectual and developmental disability labels, including autism, who have complex communication needs who use, or may benefit from, Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) in both New York and Maryland. We are looking for parents and students who are willing to provide us with access to current and past IEP documents, so that we can analyze the ways that communication supports are written into students’ academic plans. 

If you have questions about the project, please contact the researchers by emailing or calling 315-443-9379. If you are willing to participate, please proceed to our submission website.

Fit Families Program

Luis Columna, associate professor of exercise science in the School of Education, along with a team of professors, students, and experts from in and around Central New York, began working with children with autism and their families to promote physical activity and research the correlating effects of an active lifestyle. It was made possible with the support of the John Hussman Foundation and the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation.

The Fit Families program for children with autism, an offshoot of the SU Fit Families Program for children with visual impairments, was developed by Columna two years ago and was supported by the J. Henry & Martha E. DeBoer Fund at the Central New York Community Foundation and the Boeheim Foundation. The overwhelming support and success of this program is what prompted Columna to include other disabilities, this time focusing on children with autism.

Learn More


The Institute on Communication and Inclusion receives financial support from private individuals and foundations, and is part of the Inclusion Institutes, housed in the Syracuse University School of Education. We are grateful for the key support provided by the Nancy Lurie Marks Family Foundation and the John P. Hussman Foundation.

Contact the ICI

330 Huntington Hall
Syracuse, NY 13244

Phone: 315-443-9379
Fax: 315-443-2274