Specific Challenges: Various Disabilities and Conditions Which Affect Communication

Aging-related communication difficulties and AAC

Aging & Communications: Engaging Older People. Look Closer See Me. Module 4 Reference Guide. University of Cincinnati College of Nursing. http://nursing.uc.edu/content/dam/nursing/docs/CFAWD/LookCloserSeeMe/Module%204_GDST_Reference%20Guide.pdf

Addressing the Communication Needs of an Aging Society by Susan Kemper and Jose C. Lacal. Communication Needs of Older People, Three Barriers to Communication (Overaccommodations, Word Retrieval, Dual and Multitasking), Technology to Empower Older Adults, Challenges to be Overcome by MCCDs (Mobile Communication and Computing Devices), Conclusion. "The possibilities for using technology to meet the communication needs of an aging society are as broad as the communication needs of individual older adults. The ability to communicate is essential if older adults are to solicit assistance with daily living activities; fulfill lifelong learning goals; gain access to health and legal information from print, broadcast, or electronic media; or enjoy intergenerational contacts with family members. Older adults need to communicate with their families, friends, neighbors, and with their lawyers and physicians through face-to-face interaction and over the Internet." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK97337/

Augmentative Communication for Older Adults: Challenges and Considerations by Caryn F. Melvyn, Ph.D., CCC-SLP. PowerPoint slide presentation. http://scatp.med.sc.edu/expo/expo08handouts/AugComOlderAdults.ppt

Eldercare at Home, CHAPTER 16 - Communication Problems. General guides to improve communication; Use writing, pictures, and gestures to supplement spoken language. http://www.healthinaging.org/resources/resource:eldercare-at-home-communication-problems/

(2004) Enabling Frail Older People with a Communication Difficulty to Express their Views: the use of Talking Mats as an interview tool. Health and Social Care in the Community 13 (2) 95-107. AAC Research Group at the University of Stirling website. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/8015245_Enabling_frail_older_people_with_a_communication_difficulty_to_express_their_views_the_use_of_Talking_MatsTM_as_an_interview_tool

What Can I Say? Assistive Technology for Speech Impairments, Jill Sherman, MA, OTR/L, Project Director, Arizona Technology Access Program (AzTAP) AzTAP's New Initiative on Aging: Assistive Technology and Aging in Place. "It is important to understand that losing the ability to speak is NOT the same as having nothing to say. Remaining silent doesn't have to be an option!" Short general informational article; device types. http://nau.edu/sbs/ihd/programs/at-and-aging-11/

Alzheimer’s Disease and AAC

Communication and Alzheimer's. Alzheimer's Association website. "Alzheimer's disease and other dementias gradually diminish a person's ability to communicate. Communication with a person with Alzheimer's requires patience, understanding and good listening skills. The strategies below can help both you and the person with dementia understand each other better. http://www.alz.org/care/dementia-communication-tips.asp

"Unlocking the Silent Prison: Caregivers are learning a better way to communicate with Alzheimer's patients" by Christine Wicker, Parade Magazine, November 21, 2010. Brief discussion of work by Michelle Bourgeois, of Ohio State University, using memory books, photos with captioning, and written sentences as aids for memory and communication. https://dhch.duhs.duke.edu/files/documents/2--Continuing_Education--_Unlocking_the_Silent_Prisoin_February_2011.pdf

"Many Alzheimer's patients find comfort in books", New York Times, April 24, 2010. "All of my research demonstrates that people who were literate maintain their ability to read until the end stages of dementia," said Michelle S. Bourgeois, a professor of speech and hearing science at Ohio State University. http://newoldage.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/04/22/many-alzheimers-patients-find-comfort-in-books/

A Comparison of Communication Board Use for Conversations in Primary Progressive Aphasia and Alzheimer's Disease M. Fried-Oken, C. Rowland, C. Gibbons, D. Daniels, A. Mooney, & G. Noethe, ISAAC Conference 2012. PowerPoint slide presentation. Includes "What do we know so far about AAC for adults with moderate AD (Alzheimer's disease)", strategies that are not helpful and strategies that are helpful, comparison to Primary Progressive Aphasia and strategies. http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/documents/Fried_Oken_et_al_PPA_2012.pdf

AAC to Support Conversation in Persons with Moderate Alzheimer's Disease by Melanie Fried-Oken, Charity Rowland, Darlene Daniels, Mayling Dixon, Bret Fuller, Carolyn Mills, Glory Noethe, Jeon Small, Kevin Still, and Barry Oken. Research study report. "Most importantly, our results suggest that merely providing an AAC device to an individual with moderate AD does not necessarily lead to its use in conversation. In other words, AAC without training is not assistive." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3755605/

ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) and AAC

Augmentative Communication, ALS Association. Overview of ALS and Assistive Technology; What is AAC? Links to information on hands-free access to the iPad, Electronic Communication Aids, and Medicare Coverage of Speech Generating Devices (SGD). http://www.alsa.org/als-care/augmentative-communication/

Electronic Communication Aids, ALS Association. "There is a segment of the ALS population that can speak but can not use their hands and need access to a computer. Most communication software for computers consist of basically an on-screen keyboard (the keyboard is visually displayed on the screen thereby bypassing the traditional keyboard) that enables a disabled user to have full control of their computer even if they do not have use of their hands." Includes chart with listing of communication apps and cost (or free). http://www.alsa.org/als-care/augmentative-communication/electronic-aids.html

Augmentative Communication and Assistive Technology, ALS Association, Oregon and SW Washington Chapter. Links to information sheet with instructions for whole phrase voice banking, including a list of suggested phrases; information on communication boards and their use, first letter pointing, partner-assisted scanning, communication book for eyegaze; free communication software for personal computers; free and low cost apps for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. http://webor.alsa.org/site/PageServer?pagename=OR_8a_AAC_resources

BCI and ALS (podcast) "In this podcast, Melanie Fried-Oken talks about Brain Computer Interface and how this emerging technology will help people with ALS and others who are "locked in" communicate with the world and have a higher quality of life. https://rerc-aac.psu.edu/podcast-on-bci-and-als-alsa-philadelphia/ Direct link to BCI and ALS podcast: In this podcast, Dr. Fried-Oken talks about Brain Computer Interface and how this emerging technology will help people with ALS and others who are "locked in" communicate with the world and have a higher quality of life. http://alsphiladelphia.podbean.com/e/episode-25-bci-with-melanie-fried-oken/

Communication Guide, ALS Association. "Following is a guide to help you better understand the needs, as well as options for communicating." http://www.alsa.org/als-care/augmentative-communication/communication-guide.html

Communication Support for People with ALS by David Beukelman, Susan Fager, and Amy Nordness, Institute for Rehabilitation Science and Engineering, Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital and University of Nebraska, 202 Barkley Memorial Center, Lincoln, NE 68583-0732, USA. "At some point, 80 to 95% of people with ALS are unable to meet their daily communication needs using natural speech. Unfortunately, once intelligibility begins to decrease, speech performance often deteriorates so rapidly that there is little time to implement an appropriate augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) intervention; therefore, appropriate timing of referral for AAC assessment and intervention continues to be a most important clinical decision-making issue." http://www.hindawi.com/journals/nri/2011/714693/

Electronic Eye Gaze Communication Options for People with ALS by Alison Brownlee, ATP, ALS Assistive Technology blog (Dated 2013). "There are various types of electronic eye gaze options for people with ALS. These systems rely on eye movement to "activate" a letter on a computer screen in order for the letter to be typed. In order for the system to work reliably, the person with ALS needs to have upper and lower and lateral eye movements. This article will describe various options for eye gaze technology including insurance funded devices and DIY (Do It Yourself) devices. http://alsassistivetechnology.blogspot.com/2013/09/electronic-eye-gaze-communication.html

Supporting Communication for Persons with Minimal Movement (ALS, brainstem stroke). Brief video (run time: 3:48; captioned) Complete webcast available at http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/index.php/webcasts/show/id/14

Dr. Susan Fager (Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital, Nebraska) and Dr. David Beukelman (University of Nebraska) present an introduction to the use of AAC technology to support communication for persons with minimal movement. Additional information and resources available at http://aac-rerc.com. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaSJAkubDn8

Angelman Syndrome and AAC

Angelman Foundation Communication Training Series. Free online webinars. "The ASF Communication Training Series takes all of the hours of great communication workshops and breaks them down into small, digestible parts so that you and your individual with AS can reach her/his greatest communication success at any age. Using web-based teaching, the Series is designed to be sequential and you can join at any time and proceed through the training at your child's pace of learning." Click on "See Schedule and Recordings" https://www.angelman.org/resources-education/communication-training-series/ Direct link to ASF Communication Training Series Schedule and Recordings page: http://www.angelman.org/resources-education/communication-training-series/schedule-recordings/

Angelman Network – Communication page. "People affected by Angelman syndrome, have COMPLEX COMMUNICATION NEEDS and respond well to learning by accessing a multi-modal system of communication – AAC (Augmentative and Alternative Communication). Angelman Syndrome New Zealand website with numerous links to information, videos, and resources. https://angelmannetwork.wordpress.com/inclusion/education-and-communication/

Communication Strategies for Children and Adults with Angelman Syndrome, Frambu Angelman Conference, Norway April 7-11 2014, Mary-Louise Bertram. http://www.frambu.no/showfile.ashx?fileinstanceid=1ad3e255-9f0f-469d-9d76-5d9ca6601888

Dr. Stephen Calculator presentation to Angelman Syndrome Foundation conference–213: Keynote - Communication, Educational & Related Considerations for Individuals with Angelman Syndrome, Part 1 (Run time: 57:39) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sz5r66ywMJ8

General AS Education. "People with Angelman syndrome CAN learn to communicate, read and write. It is however important to understand how AS affects sleep patterns, memory, sensory processing and motor planning and also what effects any seizure medication may have on concentration." Links to many resources. https://angelmannetwork.wordpress.com/inclusion/educational-workshops/

Kate Ahern presentation to Angelman Syndrome Foundation conference–311: Implementing Augmentative & Alternative Communication. (Run time: 53:30) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fYJcvTYQST4

Aphasia and AAC

AAC and Aphasia — PrAACtical AAC website. This website has rich resources on many communication topics. Search on AAC and Aphasia brought up at least 36 articles. http://praacticalaac.org/?s=aac+and+aphasia

AAC Assessment for People with Aphasia by Carole Zangari of PrAACtical AAC. "Many times, a standard aphasia test battery doesn't yield the kind of practical information that SLPs need to develop appropriate AAC tools and/or an intervention program. From where we sit, the 'gold standard' for AAC assessment in people with aphasia is the approach developed by Drs. Kathy Garrett (Alternative Communication Therapies) and Joanne Lasker (Emerson College). What we love about their approach is that it is functional. It focuses on what the client CAN do and what they might be able to do with supports." http://praacticalaac.org/strategy/aac-assessment-for-people-with-aphasia/

AAC for Aphasia: A Review of Visual Scenes Display Project. Links to webcast, handouts, slides, transcript. Presenters: David R. Beukelman, Ph.D., Karen Hux, Ph.D., Kristy Weissling, MA, CCC, Aimee Dietz, MS, CCC, Miechelle McKelvey, MA, CCC http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/index-21030.php.html

Making It Work: 6 AAC Strategies for People with Aphasia by Carole Zangari of PrAACtical AAC. "People with aphasia are often most successful when a number of different strategies are combined. In this post, we discuss a number of strategies that we can use in our therapy and teach to communication partners." Includes information on Augmented Input, Rating Scales, Communication Books, Tagged Yes/No Questions, Written Choice Strategy, Supplementation Strategies. Link to free downloadable Topic Boards and Alphabet Cards. http://praacticalaac.org/strategy/making-it-work-6-aac-strategies-for-people-with-aphasia/

Speech Supplementation Strategies, Carole Zangari of PrAACtical AAC. "Supplementation strategies are strategies that we teach the person with communication difficulties to use in addition to their natural speech or other communication. People with aphasia often have motor speech problems, such as dysarthria or apraxia. By pairing the new strategy with their existing means of communication, the partner is better able to figure out what is being said." Includes downloadable Alphabet Cards and Topic Cards. http://praacticalaac.org/strategy/speech-supplementation-strategies/

AAC-Aphasia Categories of Communicators Checklist Adapted from Garrett, K. & Lasker, J. (2005). Adults with severe aphasia. In D.R. Beukelman and P. Mirenda (Eds.) Augmentative and Alternative Communication: Supporting Children and Adults with Complex Communication Needs, 3rd edition. Baltimore: Brookes Publishing Co. http://cehs.unl.edu/documents/secd/aac/assessment/aphasiachecklist.pdf

Aphasia Assessment Materials — Kathryn L. Garrett, Ph.D., CCC-SLP & Joanne Lasker, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, Revised 2007. The Multimodal Communication Screening Task for Persons with Aphasia: Picture Stimulus Booklet; The Multimodal Communication Screening Task for Persons with Aphasia: Scoresheet and Instructions; Scanning/Visual Field/Print Size/Attention Screening Task; Aphasia Needs Assessment; AAC-Aphasia Categories of Communicators Checklist http://cehs.unl.edu/aac/aphasia-assessment-materials/

See also links for Primary Progressive Aphasia below.

Apraxia and AAC

Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) for Children with Apraxia by Dyann Rupp, M.S., CCC-SLP. ". . .AAC is an appropriate consideration very early in intervention." http://www.apraxia-kids.org/library/augmentative-and-alternative-communication-aac-for-children-with-apraxia/

Children with Apraxia and the Use of Augmenative and Alternative Communication by Gary Cumley, Ph.D., CCC-SLP. "The ‘communication pay off’ for introducing AAC into this populations intervention plan would be that the AAC options would provide this population greater opportunity of being a more effective communicator." Thorough review article. http://www.apraxia-kids.org/library/children-with-apraxia-and-the-use-of-augmenative-and-alternative-communication/

Apraxia? Dyspraxia?  Articulation? Phonology?  What Does It All Mean? by Nancy Lucker-Lazerson, M.A., CCC-SLP. "The most important thing to remember about speech production disorders is that therapy can, in most cases, make a huge difference. The earlier and more intensive the intervention, the more successful the therapy. Group therapy can be effective for articulation disorders and some phonology disorders, but children with CAS really need the intensive, individual therapy." http://www.apraxia-kids.org/library/apraxia-dyspraxia-articulation-phonology-what-does-it-all-mean/

How Parents Can Help Their Child with Apraxia at Home by Tim Burns. "In my opinion, the single biggest factor in the improvement of speech for your child is your commitment and involvement ... Therapists and their expertise is needed so that the parents clearly know what their child can do; what their child cannot do; what the starting point for therapy is; what the end point is; and what strategies and methods will get the child from start to finish. Therapists can be great teachers, guides and cheerleaders for families.  Often, therapists need to gently wake up the parent to habits and practices that they perpetuate which are not helping the child.  But surely, therapists and parents have to have high expectations for success." http://www.apraxia-kids.org/library/how-parents-can-help-their-child-with-apraxia-at-home/

Apraxia-KIDS website. Every Child Deserves a Voice. Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association of North America (CASANA) website. Topics available: Learn about Apraxia (Apraxia-KIDS Library, Family Start Guide, SLP Start Guide, Apraxia Information Downloads, Research Symposium Videos, On-Demand Apraxia Webinars); Information for Families, Researchers, Professionals; E-mail Listserv, News Notifications, Event Nofications. http://www.apraxia-kids.org/

Autism and AAC

Joanne M. Cafiero, Ph.D.: Increasing Communication Skills in Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders: The AAC Technology Solutions. Includes Natural Aided Language, Naturalistic Learning, Creating Interactive Language Boards, Literacy Learning and Communication Skills Development. " ... providing a means to communicate immediately, that is, at first diagnosis, is essential. Interaction, communication and discourse between people are essential parts our humanness. Individuals with autism are entitled to the tools necessary to exercise this most basic human right." http://www.joannecafiero.com/IncreasingCommunicationArticle.htm

"If They Could Only Tell Me What They Are Thinking." The Need for Augmentative Communication for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders, article contributed by Kim Davis, Indiana Resource Center on Autism. "Those of us who support individuals with ASD who are non-verbal owe it to them to leave no rock unturned when it comes to seeking alternative communication." Resource list. https://www.iidc.indiana.edu/pages/If-They-Could-Only-Tell-Me-What-They-Are-Thinking-The-Need-for-Augmentative-Communication-for-Individuals-with-Autism-Spectrum-Disorders

Initial Guidelines for Developing a Communication Intervention Plan for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders and Significant Limitations in Communication Ability, Article contributed by Beverly Vicker. Indiana Resource Center on Autism website. "This article does not pretend to cover all of the complexities of the initial decision-making process and the subsequent implementation of an intervention plan. It will, however, present an overview of a basic process and will address some of the primary issues." https://www.iidc.indiana.edu/pages/Initial-Guidelines-for-Developing-a-Communication-Intervention-Plan-for-Individuals-with-Autism-Spectrum-Disorders-and-Significant-Limitations-in-Communication-Ability

On-line Articles on Communication and Autism, Indiana Resource Center on Autism website. https://www.iidc.indiana.edu/pages/articles-communication

Visual Strategies: Visual Examples of Curriculum Accommodations/Modifications for Students with ASD. Photos of activity schedules, sentence completion, matching/spelling, transition stage, and more. http://www.specialed.us/autism/05/visualexamples.htm

Developing Expressive Communication Skills for Non-verbal Children With Autism by Susan Stokes Autism Consultant. Determining current communication abilities; developing communication program based on communication needs. http://www.specialed.us/autism/nonverbal/non11.htm

Supporting Students with Autism: 10 Ideas for Inclusive Classrooms by Paula Kluth. http://www.paulakluth.com/readings/autism/article-autism-tenideas/

Typing to Communicate and Finding a Voice By Kris Medina, Self-Advocate and member of the Vermont Facilitated Communication (FC) Task Force. Arc Autism Now website. http://autismnow.org/blog/typing-to-communicate-and-finding-a-voice/

Typing, Pointing, Spelling to Communicate: See Facilitated Communication Training (FC), Rapid Prompting Method (RPM), and Informative Pointing Method (IPM)

Brain Injury & Stroke and AAC

"American Heart and American Stroke Associations Endorse New Stroke Rehabilitation Guidelines", Medscape News, News Author: Laurie Barclay, MD, CME Author: Charles Vega, MD, FAAFP. Specific rehabilitation interventions may include compensatory strategies for dysphagia, such as posture changes, heightening sensory input, swallow maneuvers, active exercise programs, diet modifications, nonoral feeding, and psychological support; aphasia treatment; dysarthria management or training in the use ofaugmentative/alternative communication devices; strength training; constraint-induced movement therapy; functional electrical stimulation; spasticity treatment beginning with noninvasive and progressing to more invasive modalities including surgery; treatment of poststroke shoulder pain; cognitive rehabilitation; and treatment of depression and other emotional disorders. http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/511995

"After devastating injury, Al pushes past frustration to learn to use AAC." "Al had a nurse coming into his home and he would always have to have someone around to make sure that they both comprehended each other. Using the app, Al no longer needed someone to help us through the appointment because they were able to communicate effectively." http://www.assistiveware.com/after-devastating-injury-al-pushes-past-frustration-learn-use-aac#utm_sguid=142064,4ee1ab2c-bcc3-12a9-0ce2-2d34259a07af

Communication Technology — Stroke Association. "As computer technology has become more efficient and less costly, an increasing variety of hardware and software options are available that can help people recovering from stroke." http://www.strokeassociation.org/STROKEORG/LifeAfterStroke/RegainingIndependence/CommunicationChallenges/Communication-Technology_UCM_310085_Article.jsp#.V63u3pgrLIU

FAQs — AAC + stroke + aphasia. Communication Matters UK website. Information and links, including using a communication aid after a stroke, AAC for adults with acquired neurological conditions. http://www.aacknowledge.org.uk/page/faqs-aac-stroke-aphasia

Helping People with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Communicate: Building 'Successful' Partnerships – A practical resource for families and friends. Information about Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) during recovery and rehabilitation. Two-page brochure. Includes Types of AAC, Communication Support During TBI Recovery, Myths and Facts about Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC), Q&A, Funding and Other Resources. https://aac-ucf.unm.edu/common/brochures/Moira-Ellis.pdf

Introducing AAC and AT to Adults with Acquired Disabilities. Sarah Blackstone, Augmentative Communication Inc.; Janet Scott, SCTCI; Steven Bloch, University College London. Special acknowledgments: David R. Beukelman, Sarah Yong, Laura Ball, Melanie Fried Oken. (2008) Slide presentation. http://www.augcominc.com/userfiles/file/adults_with_acquired_final_cm.pdf

iPad Apps (2011) Stroke Wise website. "People who have had strokes and aphasia might be candidates for using small computers (primarily tablets) for communication or to relearn how to speak." http://www.strokewise.info/2011/10/ipad-apps-people-who-have-had-strokes.html

Life-Changing Mobile Apps for People with Brain Injury. BrainLine.org - Preventing, treating and living with traumatic brain injury. "The BrainLine team sorted through many resources to compile this list of apps for mobile devices for people with a brain injury, their families and caregivers. Some of these apps have proven to be especially helpful for people with brain injury." http://www.brainline.org/content/2013/12/life-changing-iphone-and-ipad-apps-for-people-with-brain.html

National Stroke Association—Aphasia Apps. List with title, price(some free) and links for Talking Photo apps, Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) apps, Text-to-Speech apps, Speech Practice apps, Other apps https://www.stroke.org/sites/default/files/resources/iHOPE-Aphasia-Apps-List.pdf

Stroke, American Speech and Hearing Association website. Information on communication-related issues with strokes; AAC info on website. http://www.asha.org/public/speech/disorders/Stroke.htm

Traumatic Brain Injury and AAC: Supporting Communication Through Recovery. Molly Doyle, MS, CCC-SLP; Sue Fager, PhD, CCC-SLP. The ASHA Leader, February 2011, Vol. 16, online only. "Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) methods are a crucial component of assessment and intervention for adults with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). These individuals face long-term transitions in recovering their natural speech, cognitive/language status, and physical abilities as well as in moving to different placements or living situations. AAC methods and strategies are often used at all stages or levels of recovery." http://leader.pubs.asha.org/article.aspx?articleid=2278988

Use of AAC to Enhance Social Participation of Adults with Neurological Conditions by David Beukelman, Susan Fager, and Laura Ball. - 2006 AAC-RERC State of Science Conference. Slide presentation (downloadable). http://www.slideshare.net/dennis43/wwwaacrerccom-use-of-aac-to-enhance-social-participation

Use of iPhone AAC Software for Brain Injury and Stroke Patients. Katherine Knarr, B.S. Miriam Leuin, B.A. Daniel Zarakov, B.A Katelynn Kapki, B.S. Wendy Quach, Ph.D., CCC-SLP. http://www.tbi-sci.org/conference/pdf/UseofiPhoneAACSoftwareforBrainInjuryandStrokePatients.pdf

Brainstem and Spinal Cord Injury and AAC

A key to communication for locked-in syndrome patients, April 29, 2014 by Angela Herring. "For their engi¬neering design cap¬stone project, the stu¬dents cre¬ated an alter¬na¬tive device that costs a mere $223… Instead of detecting the loca¬tion of the pupil or using expen¬sive brain-computer inter¬faces, the team's EOG Assisted Com¬mu¬ni¬ca¬tion Device takes advan¬tage of a unique char¬ac¬ter¬istic of the human eye¬ball." http://www.northeastern.edu/news/2014/04/key-to-locked-in-syndrome/

Brainstem Impairment, Augmentative Communication News, February 2007 "... AAC interventions often play a key role in the individual’s short- and long-term quality of life, because AAC provides a way to connect to other people and to be productive." Article includes tools and streategies, assessment during the four phases of treatment, and profiles of fourindividuals. https://rerc-aac.psu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/2007-Patient_provider_Communication_-_Augmentative_Communication_News.pdf

Spinal Cord Injury (SCI), Augmentative Communication News, February 2007. "Many kinds of assistive technology benefit individuals with SCI so designing and maintaining an integrated system of supports (equipment and human) is essential." Article includes three phases of AAC with goals, assessment and AAC/Assistive Technology strategies. https://rerc-aac.psu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/2007-Patient_provider_Communication_-_Augmentative_Communication_News.pdf

Supporting Communication for Persons with Minimal Movement (ALS, brainstem stroke). Brief video (run time: 3:48; captioned) Complete webcast available at http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/index.php/webcasts/show/id/14. Dr. Susan Fager (Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital, Nebraska) and Dr. David Beukelman (University of Nebraska) present an introduction to the use of AAC technology to support communication for persons with minimal movement. Additional information and resources available at http://aac-rerc.com https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaSJAkubDn8

Cerebral Palsy and other Physical Disabilities

AAC for CP: Improving the communication of children with cerebral palsy who do not speak clearly or fluently By Rosemary Crossley http://www.annemcdonaldcentre.org.au/deal-newsletter-2008-4-aac-cp

Communication: Communicating Effectively — My Child at CerebralPalsy.org http://www.cerebralpalsy.org/information/communication/communicating-effectively

The Eyes Have It: Assessment Considerations for High Tech Eye Gaze Access – AAC Assessment Corner with Vicki Clarke. "…we try eye gaze for any of our students or patients who do not have consistent, comfortable access by touching a screen with their body, those with Cerebral Palsy, Rett Syndrome, and other syndromes causing atypical movement patterns. If a student has to use a stylus or pointer for direct access, we may still give eye gaze a trial, simply to open the door for discussion about all of our options for communication." http://praacticalaac.org/praactical/aac-assessment-corner-with-vicki-clarke-the-eyes-have-it-assessment-considerations-for-high-tech-eye-gaze-access-2/

Eye Tracking Communication for Individuals that are Non-Verbal. Tobii I-Series Eye Tracking Communication Device Opens World of Communication for Non-Verbal Individuals http://www.cerebralpalsy.org/inspiration/technology/eye-tracking. Speech Device Solutions for Individuals with Cerebral Palsy at Tobii Dynavox website. http://www.dynavoxtech.com/conditions/cerebral-palsy/solutions/speech-devices/


Fresh Look at AAC and Dementia with Melanie Fried Oken, PrAACtical AAC blog. "When we listen to the language of people with dementia, we often hear 'empty speech' which lacks nouns and specific names, and over time becomes more repetitive with less content and more jargon. People with dementia often retain reading, writing, and some pragmatic skills at later stages of the disease. We can monopolize on these intact skills with AAC strategies." Includes information on visual cueing systems, training for caregivers and communication partners, links to handouts, accommodation and adaptation ideas. http://praacticalaac.org/praactical/fresh-look-at-aac-and-dementia/

AAC for Adults with Acquired Neurological Conditions: A Review by David R. Beukelman, Susan Fager, Laura Ball, and Aimee Dietz. "Dementia - The aim of the interventions. . . is to maximize communicative and memory functioning to maintain (or increase) activities, participation/engagement, and quality of life for people with dementia across the disease progression." https://www.atia.org/wp-content/uploads/legacy/files/public/Research_Article-Beukelman_AAC_Adults_2007.pdf

"AAC Strategies and Tools for Persons with Dementia" by Michelle Bourgeois, Melanie Fried-Oken and Charity Rowland, The ASHA Leader, March 16, 2010. "Many non-electronic or low-tech communication approaches have been used successfully to support social interaction of persons with dementia." http://leader.pubs.asha.org/article.aspx?articleid=2291890

Communication Difficulties: Assessment and Interventions From Dermatology Nursing Posted 10/26/2005 Della Frazier-Rios, RN, MS; Cora Zembrzuski, APRN, MSN, CS, PhD (cand.) "Because the patient's language deficits and other cognitive impairments are caused by his or her dementia, the responsibility to facilitate communication lies with the clinician." http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/511629

"Dementia", Augmentative Communication News, February 2007. "At each stage, finding ways to help structure the day and support communication can make a difference in the quality of the lives of individuals with dementia." Article covers three principles for AAC plan, strategies for each stage, and the importance of communication partners. https://web.archive.org/web/20110322173637/http://www.patientprovidercommunication.org/userfiles/file/ACNNews19_1_Feb07.pdf

Developmental Disabilities and AAC

Augmentative Communication and Early Intervention Myths and Realities by MaryAnn Romski, PhD, CCC-SLP; Rose A. Sevcik, PhD. Infants & Young Children Vol. 18, No. 3, pp. 174–185. Typical patterns of language development, Young children with developmental disabilities, What is AAC, 6 Myths about AAC. "AAC is not a last resort but rather a first line of intervention that can provide a firm foundation for the development of spoken language comprehension and production. It can set the stage for further language and communication development during the child's preschool and early school years. It also can open the door for the child's overall developmental progression." https://depts.washington.edu/isei/iyc/romski_18_3.pdf

Communicating Effectively. Health Care for Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities – Toolkit for Primary Care Providers. Suggested communication tips. "Some people with intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD) have communication difficulties. People with intellectual disabilities or those whose disabilities directly affect speech, hearing, or sight are more likely to have communication difficulties." http://vkc.mc.vanderbilt.edu/etoolkit/general-issues/communicating-effectively/

Communication Services and Supports for Individuals with Severe Disabilities: Guidance for Assessment and Intervention - The National Joint Committee on the Communication Needs of Persons with Severe Disabilities Members, Nancy C. Brady, Susan Bruce, Amy Goldman, Karen Erickson, Beth Mineo, Bill T. Ogletree, Diane Paul, Mary Ann Romski, Rose Sevcik, Ellin Siegel, Judith Schoonover, Marti Snell, Lorraine Sylvester, and Krista Wilkinson http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4770561/

Guidelines for meeting the communication needs of persons with severe disabilities. National Joint Committee for the Communication Needs of Persons With Severe Disabilities. American Speech and Hearing Association guidelines including a Communication Bill of Rights, Best Practice Guidelines, Assessment, and Knowledge and Skills needed by team providing AAC services. http://www.asha.org/policy/GL1992-00201/

UW AugComm, University of Washington Augmentative Communication website. Information on Continuum of Communication Independence, Selecting AAC Vocabulary, Understanding AAC Features, Resources, and more. http://depts.washington.edu/augcomm/

Why We Generally Don't Recommend Sign Language by Carole Zangari of PrAACtical AAC. "We are big fans of using multimodal communication, supplementing natural speech with communication books, SGDs, AAC apps, gestures, and manual signs. Manual signs, yes. Sign language? Not necessarily. Here's why." http://praacticalaac.org/praactical/why-we-generally-dont-recommend-sign-language/

Down Syndrome and AAC

Communication Skills Development — From Effective Teaching Strategies for Successful Inclusion: A Focus on Down Syndrome. 1999 (before tablet technology). Topics: Barriers to Communication Development, The Importance of Speech-Language Therapy, Communication Goals in the Classroom, Visual Cues to Increase Speech Production, The Power of Music, In Conclusion – Behaviorally Speaking. http://pathfinder-nd.org/pdf/CommunicateDownSyndrome.pdf

Effects of Early AAC Intervention for Children with Down Syndrome Janice Light & Kathryn Drager Communication Sciences and Disorders Penn State University Seminar presented at ASHA, November 2010 Philadelphia, PA. PowerPoint presentation. "It is NOT a question of choosing between AAC or natural speech – Rather AAC is used in conjunction with intervention to maximize speech development." http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/_userfiles/file/Light%20ASHA%202010%20%20AAC%20and%20children%20with%20Down%20Syndrome.pdf

Severe Communication Impairment Associated with Down Syndrome by Rosemary Crossley and Rosemary Ryall, Anne McDonald Centre, Australia. A paper presented at the World Down Syndrome Congress 2000 in Sydney. Topics: Background; Hand or head - upper limb function and expressive competence; Specific Hand Function Problems; Recommendations. http://www.annemcdonaldcentre.org.au/down-syndrome

Supporting people who have Down's syndrome to overcome communication difficulties. Leela Baksi, Symbol UK 2005. "This leaflet has been written to support you to communicate successfully with people who have Down syndrome. It discusses some of the challenges faced by people who have Down syndrome, and suggests strategies we can all use to overcome communication difficulties…" http://downsyndromedevelopment.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Overcoming_communication_difficulties.pdf

Dual Diagnosis of Down Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorder and AAC

Down Syndrome – Autism Connection: Providing Education, Support and Inspiration for the Journey. "Our goal is to ensure that families, teachers, and healthcare providers receive the education and support they need -- with the ultimate goal being that children and adults with DS-ASD will receive the understanding, education, medical care and opportunities they so greatly deserve." http://www.ds-asd-connection.org/mission.html

Down Syndrome and Autistic Spectrum Disorder: A Look At What We Know by George T. Capone, M.D. Adapted From Disability Solutions Volume 3, Issues 5 & 6. "Clearly there is a great deal to be learned about children with Down syndrome who are dually diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. In the meantime, it is essential for parents to educate themselves and others about this condition. Families must work on building a team of health-care professionals, therapists, and educators who are interested in working with their child to promote the best possible outcome." http://www.ndss.org/Resources/Health-Care/Associated-Conditions/Dual-Diagnosis-of-Down-Syndrome--Autism/

Language and Communication: The Key is Effectiveness by Julie Bierman Gee, M.S., CCC-SLP, Kennedy Krieger Institute website. Article for parents discusses approaches to communication for people with Down syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorder: combination of methods, building in choices, and more. "What’s important to remember, though, is that all children can learn to communicate. That communication may take different forms for different children: your child might use sign language, while his classmate uses an augmentative communication device. However, creating an intervention program that focuses on communication is sure to let you and your child see positive effects. This article will offer you information about things to consider as you begin intervention, and give you ideas about ways to begin to focus on communication with your child." https://www.kennedykrieger.org/patient-care/outpatient-programs/language_communication_down_syndrome_asd

Fragile X Syndrome and AAC

AAC and Fragile X — A parent's perspective. By Kelli Ngariki, MAOM, MAED Posted on: September 1, 2010. "At the International Fragile X Conference I teamed up with Bick Pratt, founder of MyTalk to presentAugmentative and Alternative Communication in the iWorld: Two Parents' Personal Experience with AAC Applications for the iPhone, iPad & iPod touch." http://speech-language-pathology-audiology.advanceweb.com/Features/Articles/AAC-and-Fragile-X.aspx

Examining Assistive Instructional Technologies. "If children with FXS are successfully connected with technologies that suite each of their specific cases, then it will open important doors to promoting verbal and nonverbal communication." http://kristinsartbox.weebly.com/instructional-design/examining-assistive-instructional-technologies

Guillain-Barré Syndrome and AAC

Locked In My Body — Short documentary film from the UK (2016), featuring Terry Newbury, who was recovering from Guillain-Barré Syndrome. Newbury used eye movement (look right for "yes"), partner-assisted spelling (nodded when the therapist said the letter he wanted to spell), and eye gaze technology during his recuperation before he recovered his speech. (sporadic text but not captioned; run time 14:08) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0k8sKX6IeMs

Health Impairment, Critical Illness and AAC

AAC in Hospital Acute Care with a Focus on the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) by Kayla Hatfield. (copy of PowerPoint slide presentation) Includes link to full transcript. https://prezi.com/3z6svowqou8u/copy-of-aac-in-hospital-acute-care-with-a-focus-on-the-intensive-care-unit-icu/

AAC in the ICU — Based on chapter two by Garrett, Hepp, Costello & Fried-Oken. "…while a patient's communication needs are obviously secondary to the life-sustaining medical treatments underway in an ICU, an ability to communicate during a critical illness can increase the patient's participation in the assessment of pain and other symptoms and in making important decisions." https://rerc-aac.psu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/2007-Patient_provider_Communication_-_Augmentative_Communication_News.pdf

AAC in the ICU/Acute Care: Enhancing Quality of Care through Bedside Intervention and Quality of Care by John Costello, Boston Children's Hospital. PowerPoint slide presentation. http://www.isaac.dk/wp-content/uploads/AAC-in-ICU-acute-care.pdf

Communication vulnerable patients in the pediatric ICU: Enhancing care through augmentative and alternative communication John M. Costello, Lance Patak, and Jennifer Pritchard. Journal of Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine: An Interdisciplinary Approach 3 (2010) 289–301. "Being unable to communicate is emotionally frightening for children and can lead to an increase in sentinel events, medical errors and extended lengths of stay…This article describes three phases of intervention for communication vulnerable children in the PICU and provides examples of treatment approaches that ensure communication access as their medical condition changes." https://www.researchgate.net/publication/51523623_Communication_vulnerable_patients_in_the_pediatric_ICU_Enhancing_care_through_augmentative_and_alternative_communication

Enhancing the Communication of Suddenly Speechless Critical Care Patients. By Carmen S. Rodriguez, Meredeth Rowe, Loris Thomas, Jonathan Shuster, Brent Koeppel, and Paula Cairns. American Journal of Critical Care, May 2016, Volume 25, No. 3. Technical research article. "The integration of simple and reliable communication interventions at the bedside is essential to decrease the vulnerability faced by hospitalized suddenly speechless patients and the communication challenges faced by nurses in critical care." http://ajcc.aacnjournals.org/content/25/3/e40.full

ICU Patients use iPads to communicate with nurses — 18Dec2012. Brief news story from Singapore. Open captioned. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EhBWUt3Nm_U

The Role of AAC in Effective Patient Provider Communication with John Costello. Video (run time: 15:00; captioned). http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/index.php/webcasts/show/id/27

Supporting Children in the Pediatric ICU by Carole Zangari, PrAACtical AAC. Discussion and link to an article on the ICU experience from the child's perspective, based on work at Boston Children's Hospital. http://praacticalaac.org/praactical/supporting-children-in-the-pediatric-icu/

Underexplored Areas Of AAC: Playing a Key Role in Effective Patient-Provider Communication. Overcoming Patient-Provider Communication Barriers Across Health Care Settings. Sarah Blackstone, Ph.D., CCC-SP, Augmentative Communication, Inc. Speech and Hearing Association of Virginia Conference, March 18, 2011. "What is 'Effective Communication'? …the successful joint establishment of meaning wherein patients and healthcare providers exchange information, enabling patients to participate actively in their care from admission through discharge, and ensuring that the responsibilities of both patients and providers are understood" (The Joint Commission, 2010b, p. 91)." PowerPoint slide presentation. http://www.augcominc.com/userfiles/file/PProviderSHAV4website.pdf

Huntington's Disease and AAC

Communication Strategies for those with Huntington's disease. Jeff Searle, MS, Department of Hearing and Speech, Kansas University Medical Center. Speech and language skills affected, specific strategies for communication during progression and in advanced stages. "The principal guide-line in achieving effective communication is for the listener to consciously accept the responsibility for the conversation exchange. Because of the many deficits which frequently occur, the person with HD often needs to rely on external cues and guidance from the listener to achieve communication." http://www.kumc.edu/hospital/huntingtons/communication.html

Caregiver Guide for Mid to Late Stage Huntington's Disease: For Long-Term Care Facilities and In-Home Care Agencies. Huntington's Disease Society of America. See especially Chapter 6 on the role of speech-language pathologists, including Tips to Improve Communication (page 74) and Augmentative and Alternative Communication (page 75). http://hdsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/CaregiverGuide_Mid_Late_StageHD.pdf

Fact Sheets on Huntington Disease: Communication — Strategies to Enhance Communication, Improving Communication in Huntington Disease. Huntington Society of Canada. 2-page fact sheet. http://www.huntingtonsociety.ca/hd-fact-sheets-articles/

Huntington's Disease. American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) website. Includes: What is Huntington's disease? What are some signs or symptoms of Huntington's disease? What do speech-language pathologists do when working with people with Huntington's disease? What can I do to help someone with Huntington's disease communicate? http://www.asha.org/public/speech/disorders/HuntingtonsDisease.htm


Lynda Beedham (Eric Beedham’s story) When in Doubt, Write it Out! "Our [6 year old] son was deemed too low functioning for even the most basic picture communication system. During the parent interview, I had described what I considered to be Eric' s word recognition skills - reading was what I called it. He would place wooden blocks in a row: E R I C - A B C D E F G - S T O P. He snuggled in bed with a dictionary instead of a stuffed bear. It was a beginning, I thought, and I felt this showed that he could be taught to read. The examiner patted my hand and told me that I was being unrealistic. My goals should be more in line with Eric's potential, that is, eye contact and sitting appropriately." Fascinating report of a nonspeaking boy whose family discovered his hyperlexia and then had to work to get him an education when his reading ability was "pushed aside as an idiosyncratic, non-relevant skill." http://judyanddavid.com/cha/our_story/eric.html

Locked-in-Brain Syndrome and AAC

A key to communication for locked-in syndrome patients April 29, 2014 by Angela Herring. "Northeastern engineering undergraduate students designed a device that detects minute movements in the eyeball to help locked-in patients communicate with the outside world." http://www.northeastern.edu/news/2014/04/key-to-locked-in-syndrome/

Access Interface Strategies by Susan Fager PhDCCC-SLP, David R. Beukelman PhDCCC-SLP, Melanie Fried-Oken PhDCCC-SLP, Tom Jakobs PE & John Baker. Assistive Technology: The Official Journal of RESNA, 24:1, 25-33. "The purposes of this article are to review the state of the science of access technologies that interface with augmentative and alternative communication devices and to propose a future research and development agenda that will enhance access options for people with limited movement capability due to developmental and acquired conditions." Topics include: Minimal movement: head, eye; Listener perception of head or eye movement; Eye tracking strategies; Head tracking strategies; Recognition of residual speech; Brain computer interface; Gesture recognition. https://www.ohsu.edu/xd/research/centers-institutes/institute-on-development-and-disability/reknew/research/upload/FagerBeukelmanFriedOken2012AT.pdf

Augmentative and Alternative Communication for Adults with Total Locked-In Syndrome by Betts Peters, Brandon Eddy, Kendra McInturf, & Melanie Fried-Oken. PowerPoint slide presentation. Topics: Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) research projects, communication partner strategies, ethical considerations, references. https://rerc-aac.psu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/ISAAC-2016-AAC-for-TLIS-color-6-slides-per-page.pdf

Augmentative and Alternative Communication Training Using Eye Blink Switch for Locked-in Syndrome Patient by Si-Woon Park, M.D., You-lim Yim, M.D., Sook-hee Yi, M.D., Hyun-young Kim, O.T., and Seung-min Jung, P.T. Ann Rehabil Med. 2012 Apr; 36(2): 268–272. "Locked-in Syndrome is a severe pontine stroke causing quadriplegia, lower cranial nerve paralysis, and mutism with preservation of only vertical gaze and upper eyelid movement in a conscious patient. We present a case of a Locked-in Syndrome patient who received communication training with augmentative and alternative communication equipment by using eye blinks. After 3 weeks of training, the patient was able to make an attempt to interact with other people, and associate a new word by Korean alphabet selection. Augmentative and alternative communication equipment which uses eye blinks might be considered to be beneficial in improving the communication skills of locked-in syndrome patients." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3358685/

Brain-Computer Interface Allows "Locked-In" Patients to Communicate via Computer by Laurie Barclay, MD. "A noninvasive brain-computer interface (BCI) can allow people who are totally paralyzed to communicate by operating a computer cursor." Discussion of recent research report. http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/496019

Eye-tracking technology that makes 'life worth living' Eye gaze technology can give people with locked-in syndrome a freedom of independence that was previously unimaginable http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/technology-video/10693581/Eye-tracking-technology-that-makes-life-worth-living.html

Utah Woman Emerges from Locked-In Syndrome: "An attentive nurse spotted a spark in her eyeand asked her to close her eyes twice, which she did. Soon she was using eye blinks to communicatewith her family by words and then spelling." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xWHnkFaxMxM&NR=1

Multiple Sclerosis

Frank News at 11. News story about Frank Vanik, who has Multiple Sclerosis and who uses a bite switch to activate a speech-generating computer to communicate using Morse Code. (video; run time 2:44; auto captions) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GcAot1UCZ3Q&feature=related

Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson's Disease, Huntington's Disease; Augmentative Communication News, February 2007. "Many individuals with MS develop dysarthria [motor speech disorder due to weakness in face, mouth or respiration], which may become severe in later stages of the disease." Article discusses assessment, needs and approaches at different stages. http://www.augcominc.com/newsletters/index.cfm/newsletter_1.pdf

Muscular Dystrophy

Access Unlimited: Speaking For Yourself — AAC Devices Get Faster, Easier, More Flexible by Tara Wood. Information on various factors to consider in choosing a device to meet one's specific individual needs. http://quest.mda.org/series/access-unlimited/speaking-yourself

Computer Access and Adaptations. Keyboard adaptations, alternate keyboards, software, mouse alternatives, speech input, alternative input methods, vision alternatives, reading alternatives. (2008) http://www.brainline.org/content/2008/10/computer-access-and-adaptations_pageall.html

Meet Destani. (Age 12) "Destani uses her headpointer to activate keys on her device and to steer her wheelchair." https://www.prentrom.com/success/meet-destani

Mind Muscle. Stories of several individuals who use AAC systems. http://quest.mda.org/series/access-unlimited/mind-muscle

Mutism in Older Adults and AAC

Mutism in the Older Adult From Geriatrics & Aging, Medscape, Posted 09/20/2005 Nages Nagaratnam, MD, FRCP, FRACP, FRCPA, FACC; Gowrie Pavan, MBBS, FRAGP. "One major source of disability in chronic neurological disorders in patients with pseudobulbar palsy is impaired communication. For the replacement of the voice in anarthritic and severely dysarthritic patients there are communication devices to augment other forms of communication therapy." http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/512923

Palliative Care, hospice, serious illness and AAC

End-of-Life Issues in Speech-Language Pathology. "If the patient has difficulty speaking due to impaired breath support or deconditioning, the SLP helps develop an alternative communication strategy that will allow the patient to express his wants and needs effectively." American Speech and Hearing Association website. http://www.asha.org/slp/clinical/endoflife/

Medicare Funding of AAC Technology — Frequently Asked Questions and Answers (FAQs): Will Medicare Reimburse for SGDs For Individuals Receiving Hospice Services? 11/20/04 -- NOTE: Date of article is 2004; verify whether this has changed for any given individual case and situation. -- "Individuals considering hospice care should proceed first to address their communication needs, and as necessary, delay the onset of hospice services until one day after their SGD arrives. As long as the 'date of service' for the SGD is before hospice services began, Medicare reimbursement is available." http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/index.php/pages/show/id/23

The Role of Speech-Language Pathology in Palliative Care by Laura Chahda Speech-Language Pathologist (CPSP) Associate Lecturer, La Trobe University, Bundoora. "SLPs may develop a functional communication system with the person with a life-limiting illness and their family to fully participate in the choices being made." PowerPoint slide presentation. https://dr892t1ezw8d7.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/The-Role-of-the-Speech-Language-Pathologist-in-Palliative-Care.pdf

SLPs and Hospice Care by Lori Davis Ed.D., CCC-SLP, University of Tulsa. PowerPoint slide presentation. "Communicating immediate wants and needs about pain, discomfort, medical treatment, and emotional status are all critical for a patient during terminal illness…Being able to eat and drink a little and communicate with family and friends is critical." http://www.asha.org/Events/convention/handouts/2011/Davis/

Parkinson's Disease

Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson's Disease, Huntington's Disease; Augmentative Communication News, February 2007. Article discusses communication supports and strategies for different stages and provides a case example. https://web.archive.org/web/20110322173637/http://www.patientprovidercommunication.org/userfiles/file/ACNNews19_1_Feb07.pdf

Prader-Willi Syndrome and AAC

Speech and Language & Prader-Willi Syndrome. Prader-Willi Syndrome Association-USA. "These alternate forms of communication are merely transitional steps to the development of speech and language. In many cases, augmentative techniques increase overall communication and may reduce the level of frustration for both child and caregivers." https://www103.ssldomain.com/pwsausa/PDF/speech.pdf

Primary Progressive Aphasia

AAC for Persons with Primary Progressive Aphasia by Melanie Fried-Oken, Ph.D., Oregon Health and Science University. Webcast in Adobe Presenter or in QuickTime format. "The webcast provides evidence, from a controlled experiment, that AAC is an important and valid intervention for people with progressive aphasia in clinical and natural settings." Includes description of research and key findings. http://aac-rerc.psu.edu/index.php/webcasts/show/id/18

Rett Syndrome and AAC

Augmentative Communication: Applications and Practical Strategies for Children who have Rett Syndrome, Linda J. Burkhart. "The use of multiple communication systems is vastly more effective than use of a single system." Reasons for using AAC, key components for success; handout in outline format. http://www.lindaburkhart.com/haacrett.html

Augmentative and Alternative Communication, Cathy Gaines, CCC-SLP, EdS. "Everyone uses AAC through written language, body language and facial expression. These avenues may be difficult for the girl with RS, so she may need to use eyegaze, head pointing, communication boards, switches and voice output communication devices." Information on no tech, low/mid-tech, and high tech approaches. http://www.pediastaff.com/blog/augmentative-and-alternative-communication-with-rett-syndrome-3992

Fresh Look: AAC for Children Who Have Rett Syndrome with Dr. Theresa Bartolotta. "Most individuals with RTT will not develop functional verbal skills. So, for this population, implementation of AAC strategies EARLY will help provide the best outcomes…Consideration of alternative access for AAC using body parts other than the hands, including head, arm, or eyes should be a primary goal." http://praacticalaac.org/praactical/fresh-look-aac-for-children-who-have-rett-syndrome-with-dr-theresa-bartalotta/

Rett Syndrome. PrAACtical AAC by Carole Zangari - website search. Numerous articles and links regarding Rett Syndrom and AAC. http://praacticalaac.org/?s=rett+

Communication — International Rett Syndrome Association website. Information on No-tech methods, Low-tech medium tech methods, High-tech methods/devices. https://www.rettsyndrome.org/for-families/communication

Visual Impairment and AAC

Augmentative and Alternative Communication. American Federation of the Blind website. "When a child has a visual impairment and additional disabilities, she may need to use alternative methods to communicate her thoughts and needs." http://www.afb.org/section.aspx?SectionID=79&TopicID=368&DocumentID=4058

5 Great Resources for Helping Individuals with Vision and Hearing Loss, Carole Zangari, PrAACtical AAC blog. http://praacticalaac.org/praactical/5-great-resources-for-helping-individuals-with-vision-and-hearing-loss/

High Contrast Core Vocabulary Board, Carole Zangari, PrAACtical AAC blog. http://praacticalaac.org/praactical/praactical-resources-high-contrast-core-vocabulary-board/