RESNA, the Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America, is the premier professional organization dedicated to promoting the health and well-being of people with disabilities through increasing access to technology solutions. RESNA advances the field by offering certification, continuing education, and professional development; developing assistive technology standards; promoting research and public policy; and sponsoring forums for the exchange of information and ideas to meet the needs of our multidisciplinary constituency.
The organization's legal name is RESNA.
RESNA's goal is "To maximize the health and well being of people with disabilities through technology."
The purpose of RESNA is to contribute to the public welfare through scientific, literary, professional and educational activities by supporting the development,dissemination, and utilization of knowledge and practice of rehabilitation and assistive technology in order to achieve the highest quality of life for all citizens.
RESNA is a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit membership association. RESNA's volunteer Board of Directors provides governance and oversight of the organization's activities. The Board establishes several committees for this purpose. RESNA also has a small professional staff, consisting of an Executive Director and core programmatic staff. The organization is headquartered in Arlington, VA. Please click here to view the RESNA Strategic Plan for 2014-2018.
What RESNA Offers
RESNA offers several programs for members and for the assistive technology professional community at large. Information on all of these programs is available on this website. The programs are listed here and linked to the relevant web pages:
- Continuing Education
- Assistive Technology Journal
- Annual Conference
- Assistive Technology Standards Development
- Student Design Competition
- Student Scientific Paper Competition
In addition, RESNA manages two federal grant projects. These programs are listed here and linked to their relevant websites:
RESNA also works to keep members and assistive technology professionals current on technology trends and encourages collaboration and information sharing through a variety of communication tools. These communication tools are listed here and linked to the relevant webpages:
RESNA participates in government affairs and policy at the international, federal, state and local level. Please follow this link to the Government Relations webpage in the Knowledge Center to learn more.
The RESNA Bylaws set forth the basic structure and abilities of the RESNA Board and the organizational bodies which it oversees, and establishes how the Board conducts business.
The concept of a non-profit organization dedicated to those involved in rehabilitation engineering was developed in August 1979 by a group of engineers and scholars attending the Inter-Agency Conference on Rehabilitation Engineering. More than 200 people attending the meeting supported the creation of such an organization, and RESNA became incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation (501(c)(3)) in 1980.
Learn more about RESNA's history...
RESNA's unique logo icon incorporates the ancient legend of the Gordian knot, an intricate puzzle created to amuse Alexander the Great. The Gordian knot and its solution is a metaphor about how RESNA members solve problems by "thinking outside of the box." Find out how Alexander the Great solved the puzzle.
RESNA is the only professional home for everyone that works in assistive technology. Rehabilitation and biomedical engineers, occupational therapists, physical therapists, speech-language pathologists, assistive technology specialists, computer scientists and developers, inventors, researchers, educators, suppliers and manufacturers are all members of RESNA. Members enjoy many benefits, including discounts on professional development, the annual conference, a free subscription to Assistive Technology Journal, on-line membership communities, and more. Visit the Membership section of the website to find out more.