NOTE: This is the LAST post that will appear on this blog. All past and future posts will now appear on the new Speaking of Speech.com. This post is in reference to the changes on that updated website.
Welcome to the new and improved Speaking of Speech.com! I hope by now you have signed up for an account and have started exploring all of the exciting upgrades in the totally revamped site. Here’s a quick overview to help you get oriented.
If you have bookmarks to any interior pages on the old site, such as the Materials Exchange, or to any message boards, such as the Help Line, you need to clear them out and set a new bookmark to www.speakingofspeech.com. You can easily access all features from that home page.
If you haven’t done so already, set up an account so that you can access the site content AND make connections with other site users on the Social tab. This takes the place of the message boards, although the content from the message boards has been migrated over to the Social page AND is now searchable by category. Woo Woo! You easily post your message and categorize it with a single click, and you can upload pictures!! You can respond to someone else’s post via the LIKE button and you can leave comments in the message thread, just like on the old site, only better. Public Feed is the default, and allows you to see all posts. Timeline will show you posts that you have made. So, if you used the HELP LINE and other message boards on the old site, you will now use SOCIAL as the new message board!
The Materials Exchange was clearly the most popular feature of the old site, and I’m sure will be just as popular in the new format. At the top left, you’ll see “Mode.” This will allow you to change the way the materials are presented, either as cards with thumbnail previews or as a list. You can drill down to exactly what you want by using the category filter. Wow, isn’t that amazing?! When in card view, you can see a quick preview, rate the materials with stars, add a review, and mark your favorites by clicking the heart. You’ll also notice that the materials have been reworked with new graphics, adding a consistent appearance to all of the free downloads. By using the icon menu on the left, you can see your downloads, favorites, and reviews.
Until now, I had to post all of the contributed materials, so you can imagine how excited I am about this improvement: YOU can now upload materials that you created. As before, materials must be your own original creation and the images that you use must be royalty-free; copyrighted images are not permitted. If you are unsure about this, please ask! To contribute, go the nine-box icon next to the bell at the top right of the page and click on Materials. From there, you’ll create a “store” even though all materials are free. You’ll then have a dashboard that lets you see how many times your materials have been viewed and downloaded and any reviews that have been posted. To upload materials, click on the Store Listings tab, then click the purple plus sign. An uploads window will pop up and walk you through the process. Easy peasy, right?
So, to review: you can interact with the site and site visitors through the Social section (formerly known as message boards) and through the Materials section (formerly known as the Materials Exchange). But here is something completely new! If you ever had the itch to write a blog post, here’s your chance! I’ll continue to write blog posts monthly, and hope you’ll join me in blogging whenever the spirit moves you! Just go to the Contributor Menu (nine-block icon next to the bell) and click on Blogs. You’ll be taken to a Dashboard, similar to the one for Materials, that will list your posts, monitor traffic, and show reviews of your posts. To add a post, click on Blogger Postings, then click on the purple plus sign. Then simply fill out the pop-up menu and – voila! – you are a blogger! We’d love to hear about your experiences, professional tips and tricks, and anything else related to the SLP world!
Lastly, in this quick overview of the new features, you’ll see that there is a tab for Jobs. This fabulous addition to the site will show you a long list of searchable jobs in our field AND you can start the application process for the jobs right there online! The Applied Jobs tab will keep track of those openings to which you responded.
Speaking of Speech.com has been a wildly popular and trusted SLP site for nearly 20 years, and now it has been brought up to contemporary standards with its new look and new features. I hope you enjoyed this whirlwind tour and hope you enjoy all that the new and improved site has to offer!