4To give people their VOICE Because we all have something to say! PurposeTo give people their VOICEBecause we all have something to say!
5What role do you play in giving people their voice?
6What does Augmentative/Alternative Communication mean to you?
7What is augmentative /alternative (AAC) communication? Refers to the incorporation of techniques that can be used to help individuals with disabilities in general, as well as to very specialized technologies designed specifically for individuals with significant and severe disabilities. These techniques include, for example, the use of communication symbols, aids, strategies, skills, and devices designed to assist disabled individuals. (Sarah Blackstone; 1986)What is augmentative /alternative communication?ASHA??
8AAC communication includes NonverbalVocalizations* Low-tech or no-tech* Lite-tech* High-tech
9Goals include: Your goals for this workshop Write 3 ( on the back of your evaluation form)*
10Goals include: Explain the process of obtaining an AAC tool/device Describe tools/techniques used to determine the AAC candidate’s skillComplete many of the components with templates provided for gathering, compiling and reporting the results.Identify components on AAC devices such as common features and categories of devices (i.e. dynamic display, digitized, integrated, etc.)Identify local resources and consultants for trials, support, and funding assistance for AAC devices.
11Schedule Today – Tomorrow Looking at the “Communicator” Using a “Toolkit” for EvaluationLunchMatching persons to devices / communication toolsTrialing the toolkitTomorrowCase studies – oursCase studeis - yoursDecision-making process for appropriate devicesTrialing the appropriate device(s)Using your local resourcesFunding
12A Systematic Approach for AAC Evaluations ACES ModuleAugmentativeCommunicationEvaluationSimplified
16AAC Evaluations - Challenges Availability of systematic assessment protocolsAcquire premade materials/resources (vocabulary, overlays, etc)Not organized / equipment available when needed / working when neededTraining ???Knowledge???Experience???Keeping up with technologyOverwhelming ? ? ?
17Process – Beginning to end PersonReferralGathering informationDeciding on skills to assessChoosing the “toolkit items” usedEvaluating the individual's skills (sensory, physical, language, communication functions/needs, etc.)Summarizing individual’s skills
18Process continued Communication Tools / Devices Matching skills to communication tools(feature - matching)Voice / no voiceTrialing communication tools / voice output devicesMaking recommendationsWriting appropriate documentationCompleting funding paperwork as neededUse of your equipment reps
23Level of communicatorEmergingContext/Partner DependentIndependent
24EmergingNo RELIABLE means of EXPRESSIVE communication through SYMBOLIC languageHave some functional non-verbal communication (gestures, vocalizations, other nonsymbolic communication)Able to attend, even briefly, to individuals, conversations, pictures, or symbolsYes/no (acceptance/rejection) depicted with body language; i.e. no reliable yes/no for more complex communication
25Context- or Partner-Dependent Has SYMBOLIC communication that is RELIABLEbut limited to particular CONTEXTS or PARTNERSRely on partners to provide limited response setNeed frequent instruction and cueingDifficulty with initiationMay only be functional in particular settingsWide range with regard to # of partners and # of settings
26Independent (Generative) Can communicate ANYTHING on ANY TOPIC to ANYONE in ANY CONTEXTLocate, select, and convey messages on their ownCan interact with familiar / unfamiliar partners equally wellCan sequence symbols or letters to generate novel messages
34Gathering your Toolkit Help you organize what you have - toolkit listHelp you decide what to add to your resourcesGive you additional ideas for premade materials / resourcesGive you additional resources you can access:CDAAC TechConnect- web
58Toolkit #3 - “Higher Tech” Laptop or tablet computer(convertible laptop optimal)Add communication softwareEmulate devices (large, medium, small)AccessoriesTouch Screen (not just with pen)Switch interfaceMake small, med. And large overlay
61Communication Software Emulate the devices3rd party software which does the following:Make various configuration of overlaysAble to link them together to evaluate navigationCan do scanning of all typesSpelling (word prediction) - optimal
62Software for purchase Tobii Communicator (Tobii ATI) - $599 - SayIt! Sam Software (Words +)-$1395Speaking Dynamically Pro (Mayer Johnson)-The Grid (Sensory software)Mind Express (Words+)othersBoardmaker Plus (Mayer Johnson)Overboard (Gus)
63Free manufacturer software/ demos you can get . . . Series 5 Semesterware (DynaVox)PASS software (Prentke Romich)SayIt! Sam (Words+)E Z Keys (Words+)Mind Express (Words + - coming)Others?
67ACES Module: Your Tools & Resources Toolkit components: communication toolsto have at your fingertips (in the bag)Premade evaluation materials / resources(in the book)Templates / resources to complete paperwork(on CD and on the web)Resources to make decisions on devices(On web)
70Symbols Objects Photos COPPS Pictures Overlays Visual scenes Alphabet boardsMake one example of each of these to show from the kit
71Symbols and premade materials Make your ownPurchase other resourcesExamples of Toolkit NotebookCD coming with PCS boards on it –Fall 2010
72Pre-made pictures/overlays What do you use?We use . . .Examples include various sizes (size of message key and #’s of keys)Various communication functionsDynamic display (low tech example)Sizes example
81The Test of Aided-Communication Performance (TASP) by Joan Bruno, Ph.D., CCC-SLPA tool for the assessment of symbol-based communication skills.Includes subtests on symbol size and number, grammatical encoding, categorization and syntactic performance.Results may help determine AAC intervention strategies and goals.Provides starting point for designing communication boards or selecting a page for an AAC device.
82Alphabet boards Alphabet/Spelling Alphabet boards Keyboard arrangementsABCQWERTYFrequency of occurrenceGrammar based boards
91Premade vocabulary considerations Language representationProgression (easy to more complex)IndividualizingSmaller vs. larger vocabulary needsEase of navigationEase of learning (for user and communication partners)
113Types of devices to consider Dynamic displayIntegrated systemsText – to – speechDigitizedSimpler digitizedSingle message communicators
114Dynamic Display Multiple pages “Navigate between pages” Variety of symbols availableBoth types of speech (digitized & synthesized)Possible to use generative languageOffers more options for alternative access
116Integrated System Multiple pages “Navigate between pages” Variety of symbols availableBoth types of speech (digitized & synthesized)Includes computer components
117Digitized Simpler communication needs Recorded voice Use of pictures Multi lingualMost of them have:Paper overlays that are changedAlso called “static display”
118Digitized Devices (examples only – not all inclusive)
119Text to Speech Mainly spelling (keyboard and some have scanning) Most have built-in keyboardsMostly synthesized speech, though few have digitized speech
120Text-to-Speech (examples only – not all inclusive)
121Let’s Review what we have so far: The Person (ACES Module)AAC Device Features (AAC Module)Toolkit List (AAC Module)Gather information (Case history & Summary Evaluation in ACES Module)Record evaluation results (form above & Assessment summary in Templates)Device Decision-Making (AAC Module)Device Assistant – 30 day trial from AAC TechConnectWrite report (Templates)Funding (work with vendor)
122Device Selection Which Device to Choose ? ? ? ? Low tech Lite tech High techCombination
140Review goalsSuggestions for next time?Please put on your eval form.
141Did we: Explain the process of obtaining an AAC tool/device Describe tools/techniques used to determine the AAC candidate’s skillsComplete many of the components with templates provided for gathering, compiling and reporting the results.Identify components on AAC devices such as common features and categories of devices (i.e. dynamic display, digitized, integrated, etc.)Identify local resources and consultants for trials, support, and funding assistance for AAC devices.
142THANK YOUfor helping othersTo getThe best choiceFor the best voice
143Debby McBride, MS, CCC-SLP 866.4U.AAC.RX info@aacTechConnect.com Contact us at:Debby McBride, MS, CCC-SLP866.4U.AAC.RX866/ or 303/