About The Book

Fundamentals of AAC: A Case-Based Approach to Enhancing Communication is a course-friendly textbook designed to walk readers through the theoretical and clinical underpinnings of assessment, intervention, and consultation for individuals with complex communication needs across the lifespan. Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) encompasses a variety of communication methods and is used by those with a wide range of speech and language impairments. With a consistent framework and descriptive case studies, as well as input from various stakeholders, readers can gain a comprehensive understanding of the needs of persons who use AAC and how to provide them with ethically and culturally considerate support.

Unlike other texts on this topic, this book empowers the reader to visualize AAC in action. Each chapter offers evidence-based information about the topic along with a case study. The case studies combined with short essays from various stakeholders illustrate the variety of ways in which AAC can enhance an individual’s connection with their communication partners and community, and the role of the speech-language pathologist as integral to this process.

Intended to easily translate into a 6-, 8-, or 13-week semester course, this textbook is divided into seven distinct sections:

  • Section I provides an overview of AAC, no-tech, mid-tech, and high-tech AAC systems, as well as mobile technology and advancing technology.
  • Section II discusses cultural and linguistic responsivity and how this underlies AAC systems and services.
  • Section III reviews AAC assessment, intervention and implementation for toddlers, preschoolers, and school-aged individuals, along with goal-writing and data collection.
  • Section IV covers assessment, intervention, and implementation for young adults and adults needing AAC.
  • Section V offers the reader detailed information and rich examples of the application of AAC for persons with developmental disabilities.
  • Section VI provides the theoretical foundation and exemplar case studies of AAC for persons with acquired disabilities.
  • Section VII details consultation and training for various stakeholders, as well as tele-AAC services.

Key Features

  • Overviews with key terms set the stage for each section
  • 36 case studies with questions and visuals to clearly depict each case
  • Boxes with practical tips and expert advice
  • A PluralPlus companion website with diverse online resources for instructors in the Instructor’s Manual and video vignettes and tutorials for readers

About The Authors

Nerissa Hall, PhD, CCC-SLP, ATP, is co-founder of Commūnicāre, LLC, a company that specializes in augmentative and alternative communication, assistive technology, telepractice, and tele-AAC working primarily with school-aged individuals, providing specialized, evidence-based intervention, assessment and consultation services.

Jenifer Juengling-Sudkamp, PhD, CCC-SLP, is a speech-language pathologist at the Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System/VA and adjunct professor in the Department of Orthopaedics at Tulane University School of Medicine.

Michelle L. Gutmann, PhD, CCC-SLP, is a clinical professor at Purdue University Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, where she teaches a variety of graduate courses including AAC, Counseling in Communication Disorders, and Motor Speech Disorders.

Ellen R. Cohn, PhD, CCC-SLP, ASHA-F, is a professor in the Department of Communication Science and Disorders, University of Pittsburgh. She teaches courses in cleft palate/craniofacial disorders, professional issues, culture, diversity and healthcare, and rhetoric and communication.

Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments
About the Editors
Contributors
Reviewers


Section I. AAC System Fundamentals
Chapter 1. A Co-Constructed Description of AAC

Nerissa Hall, Hillary K. Jellison, Maria Burke, William Burke, Craig Burke, and Julia Serra
   Introduction
Fundamentals
A Change in Focus
A Co-Constructed Understanding of AAC
In Conclusion 
       
Case Study: WB
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
The AAC System
Next Steps
References

Chapter 2. No-Tech AAC 
Amal M. Maghazil

Fundamentals
Unaided AAC
Aided AAC
In Conclusion 
     
  Case Study: PG 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Next Steps
References

Chapter 3. Mid- and High-Tech AAC
Elena M. Fader
Fundamentals
Mid-Tech AAC
High-Tech AAC
Communicative Purpose
In Conclusion 
     
  Case Study: RA
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Next Steps
References

Chapter 4. Mobile AAC
Oliver Wendt

Fundamentals
Introduction: What Are Mobile Technologies?
The Mobile Technology Revolution in AAC
Principles in Mobile Technology Application Design
Research Evidence and Funding Issues Related to Mobile Technology
Case Study: LM 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
The AAC System or Service
Next Steps
References

Chapter 5. Physical Access Features of AAC
Kathryn D’Agostino Russo
 Fundamentals
What Is Alternate Access and Who Is It for?
Types of Alternate Access
Assessment for Alternate Access
Multimodal and Low-Tech Access for Communication
Considering Multiple Methods of Access
Access and Mobile Tablets
Learning Language and Access Skills
In Conclusion
        Case Study: JB 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
The AAC System or Service
Next Steps
References

Essay 1. Clinical Considerations and AAC: The Future of AAC 
Mai Ling Chan

References

Section II. AAC Language Fundamentals
Essay 2. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Culture and Social and Economic
Determinants of Health and the Use of AAC

Ellen R. Cohn and Mario C. Browne
What Are Social Determinants of Health?
Scenario 1: A Family Suffering From Societal and Economic Stressors
Scenario 2: A Family With Superior Resources
Digital Resources and Social Determinants of Health
References

Chapter 6. Cultural and Linguistic Responsivity in AAC
Gloria Soto and Marika King

Fundamentals
Consequences of Subtractive Bilingual Environments for AAC Users
Building Additive Bilingual Environments for AAC Users
Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Assessment
Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Intervention
         Case Study: JR 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Next Steps
References

Chapter 7. Language and Vocabulary Features of AAC 
Brittney Cooper, MariaTeresa “Teri” H. Muñoz, and Gloria Soto

Fundamentals
General Considerations
Vocabulary Selection Frameworks
Types of Vocabulary
Vocabulary Selection Tools
In Conclusion
         Case Study: AN 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Next Steps
References

Essay 3. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Introduction to Models of Culture 
Ellen R. Cohn and John W. Gareis

Edward T. Hall’s Cultural Iceberg Model
Purnell’s Model for Cultural Competence
Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions Model
Conclusion
References

Essay 4. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Introduction to African American
Culture—Cultural Values and Communicating Respect
Paula K. Davis

References

Essay 5. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Introduction to Hispanic Culture ––
Cultural Values and Communicating Respect
Glen M. Tellis

Cultural Values and Communicating Respect
Respect for Authority
Cultural Values and Other Aspects
References

Essay 6. Cultural Considerations and AAC: LGBTQIA+ Affirmative Practice: 
Empowering Our Queer Clients and Families
Gazit Chaya Nkosi
Vocabulary and Definitions
References 

Essay 7. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Self-Evaluation of Cultural Competence
Dorian Lee-Wilkerson and Shelly Chabon
References

Essay 8. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Religious Considerations
John W. Gareis

Diet
Prescription Medication
Medical Procedures
Conclusion
References

Essay 9. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Essential Faith-Based Vocabulary
for Protestant Christian Users of AAC
John W. Gareis

Essay 10. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Essential Vocabulary for Jewish
Users of AAC

Karen J. Golding-Kushner

How the Deity Is Referred To
Titles of Religious Leaders and Other Key Figures
Things We Read and Write
Ritual Objects and Related Things
What We Do and Say
Holidays and Celebrations
Praying: Key Prayers, Blessings, and Names of Services
Where We Go: Houses of Worship, Study, and Gathering
Family
Life-Span Topics
Food
Who We Are
Guidance on Use of This Vocabulary
Reference

Essay 11. Cultural Considerations and AAC: Essential Vocabulary for
Muslim Users of AAC

Amal M. Maghazil

Guidance on Use of This Vocabulary
Deity/God
Religious Texts
Religious Leaders and Other Key Figures
Houses of Worship
Ritual Objects/Related Things
Actions
Greetings/Sayings
Holidays and Celebrations
Prayers and Names of Services
Family
Life-Span Topics
Food
Who We Are
References

Section III. AAC Assessment, Intervention, and Implementation for
Infants, Toddlers, and School-Aged Individuals

Essay 12. Ethical Considerations and AAC: A Framework for Ethical
Communication and Practice

Paula Leslie
 References

Essay 13. Ethical Considerations and AAC: A Consumer’s Perspective
Chris Klein and Katya Hill

Chapter 8. Assessing Toddlers and Preschoolers 
Meher Banajee

Fundamentals
General Principles of Assessment of Toddlers and Preschoolers
Preparation for the Assessment
Assessment
           Case Study: RC 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Rationale for Clinical Decision-Making
Next Steps
References

Chapter 9. Intervention and Implementation for Toddlers and Preschoolers
Using AAC

Barbara Weber

Fundamentals
            Case Study: IB 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
The AAC System
Rationale for Clinical Decision-Making
Next Steps
References

Chapter 10. Assessing School-Aged Individuals 
Sarah Gregory
   Fundamentals
            Case Study: RJ 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
The AAC System or Service Considerations
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 11. Intervention and Implementation for School-Aged Individuals
Using AAC

Amanda Soper

Fundamentals
Intervention Across the Five Domains of Language
Intervention Across AAC Competencies
Innovation/Modifications to Existing Language Therapy Tools
Descriptive Teaching Method
Support and Teaching Strategies
            Case Study: JV 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Ongoing Assessment
Intervention Strategies and Implementation Supports
References

Essay 14. Clinical Considerations and AAC:AAC and Literacy 
Lesley Quinn

Reference

Chapter 12. Data Collection and Goal Writing in AAC 
Kate Grandbois and Amy Wonkka

Fundamentals
Goal Writing
            Case Study: SB 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
The Data Collection System
The Rationale for Clinical Decision-Making
Next Steps
References

Essay 15. Clinical Considerations and AAC: Visual Support for AAC
Amy Wonkka and Kate Grandbois

Chapter 13. AAC for the Child in End-of-Life Care
Rachel Santiago

Fundamentals
The Care Team at End-of-Life
Communication Planning
Common Needs and Symptoms Children May Experience at End-of-Life
AAC Considerations at End-Of-Life
Conclusion
            Case Study: GM 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Section IV. AAC Assessment, Intervention, and Implementation
for Adults

Chapter 14. Services for Young Adults Using AAC Transitioning to Adulthood 
Diane Nelson Bryen

Fundamentals
Prologue
New and Emerging Communication Technologies
AAC and the Importance of Transition
            Case Study: CK 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 15. Assessing Adults
Jeffrey K. Riley, Lois Turner, and Stacey Harpell

Fundamentals
Communication Assessment and Action Plan
Final Report
            Case Study: GB 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
The Assessment
Next Steps
References

Essay 16. Ethical Considerations and AAC: Ethical Vendor Relationships
Katya Hill

References

Chapter 16. Intervention and Implementation for Adults With
Neurodegenerative Disorders Using AAC

Catherine Kanter, Emily Kornman, and Annette M. Stone

Fundamentals
Education and Counseling
Preservation
Augmentation
Adaptation
Final Thoughts
Case Study: SH 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC System or Service Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 17. AAC for the Individual in the Intensive Care Unit 
Richard R. Hurtig and Tami Altschuler

Fundamentals
Introduction: Communication Risks and Barriers Including Health Disparities,
Diversity, and Inclusion
Special Considerations for the Intensive Care Unit
Patient Care Standards
Communication Partner Training and Interprofessional Practice
Life-Sustaining Decision-Making and End-of-Life Communication
Best Practices Models
Conclusion
             Case Study: EG 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 18. AAC for Adults in End-of-Life Care
Amanda Stead

Fundamentals
Communication Difficulties at End-of-Life
How AAC Can Support Communication, Socialization, and Decision-Making
 Case Study: KM 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
The AAC System or Service
Next Steps
References

Section V. AAC for Persons With Developmental Disabilities

Essay 17. Clinical Considerations and AAC: A Parent’s Perspective 
Danielle A. Wagoner

Language
Include
Support
Team
Encourage
Normalize
Always L.I.S.T.E.N.

Chapter 19. AAC for Persons With Developmental Disabilities 
Jeeva John

The Fundamentals
Challenging Behaviors and the Role of Speech-Language Pathologists
AAC Evolves Across Their Life Span
Establish “Buy-in” and Prepare for the Communication Journey
Assessment and Selecting a Tool
Investigative Intervention
Designing a Meaningful Communication System
Consultation Services
              Case Study: KC 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 20. AAC for Persons With Autism Spectrum Disorder 
Tanushree Saxena-Chandhok, Deborah Xinyi Yong, and Sarah Miriam Yong Oi Tsun

Fundamentals
SETT Framework
Communicative Competence
AAC Intervention Strategies
The Role of the Caregiver in AAC Intervention
              Case Study: EL 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 21. AAC for Persons With Cerebral Palsy 
Katya Hill

Fundamentals
AAC Strategies and Technology
AAC Assessment
Intervention
              Case Study: PL 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC System and Service Considerations
Next Steps
References

Essay 18. Clinical Considerations and AAC: The Other “A” for “Augmentative” 
Rebecca M. Lavelle

Chapter 22. AAC for Persons With Specific Sensory Impairments 
Lesley Quinn and Hillary K. Jellison
Fundamentals
Dual Sensory Impairment
Cortical Visual Impairment
AAC and Sensory Impairments
               Case Study: HS 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 23. AAC for Individuals With Sensory Integration Challenges 
Sarah Gregory and Elisa Wern

Fundamentals
Competencies Versus Sensory Integration Areas
Considerations for the Trial Process
Instructional Strategies
Case Study: ES 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
The AAC System or Service
Next Steps
References

Chapter 24. AAC for Persons With Complex Trauma 
Lesley Quinn

Fundamentals
                Case Study: PW 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Section VI. AAC for Persons With Acquired Disabilities 

Essay 19. Ethical Considerations and AAC: Critical Health Situations,
Informed Consent, and the Importance of Appropriate AAC

Paula Leslie

References

Chapter 25. AAC for Persons With Traumatic Brain Injury 
Lindsay R. James Riegler and Laura P. Klug

Fundamentals
Review of Cognitive-Communication Deficits in TBI
AAC Versus Assistive Technology Versus Information and Communication Technologies
Augmentative and Alternative Communication
Assistive Technology
Information and Communication Technologies
Special Considerations
               Case Study: TH 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 26. AAC for Persons With Motor Speech Disorders 
Mary Andrianopoulos

Fundamentals
               Case Study: RL 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 27. AAC for Persons With Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis 
Telina Caudill

Fundamentals
Communication Symptoms
Dysarthria
Voice Disorder
Cognitive-Communication
Dysphagia
Communication Needs
Intervention Phases
Phase 1: Monitor, Prepare, and Support
Phase 2: Assess, Recommend, and Implement
Phase 3: Adapt and Accommodate
                Case Study: RP 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC System or Service Considerations
The Rationale for Clinical Decision-Making
Next Steps
References

Chapter 28. AAC for Persons With Aphasia 
Kimberly A. Eichhorn

Fundamentals
                 Case Study: WP 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 29. AAC for Persons With Dementia 431
Vanessa L. Burshnic-Neal
Fundamentals
Setting the Stage for AAC Use in Dementia
Strengths and Deficits in Dementia
Memory
Communication
Strengths and Deficits in Dementia: Clinical Implications
Guidelines for Developing AAC for People With Dementia
Examples of AAC for People With Dementia
Supported Preference Assessment
Memory Books
Orientation Aids
Reminder Cards
Activities of Daily Living Support
Supporting Care Partners
Conclusion
                 Case Study: AM 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
The Rationale for Clinical Decision-Making
Next Steps
References

Chapter 30. AAC for Persons Who Are Medically Complex 
Abygail E. Marx and Sarah Marshall
Fundamentals
Introduction
Participation Framework
                 Case Study: LG 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC System or Service Considerations
Next Steps
References

Section VII. AAC Services for Stakeholders 

Chapter 31. AAC Consultation 
Erin S. Sheldon
Introduction
Terminology
The Fundamentals of AAC Consultation
Limits of the Traditional AAC Consultation Process
Collaborative Consultation
The Collaborative Consultation Process
Speech-Language Pathologists as Learners
Speech-Language Pathologists as Teachers
Developing Consensus on the Problem
Shared Decision-Making
Building Capacity for AAC Implementation
                 Case Study: JE 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Next Steps
References

Chapter 32. Communication Partner Training for Families 
Tabitha Jones-Wohleber
Fundamentals
Family Characteristics
AAC in Everyday Life
All-the-Time Access
Leverage Requesting
“Something Different”—All-the-Time Choice
Referencing
Before, During, and After
Spiraling Learning Experiences for AAC Communication Partners: Four Key Elements
Information
Tools/Technology
Skills
Habits
                 Case Study: PH
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Service Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 33. Communication Partner Training for Clinicians 
Tabitha Jones-Wohleber
Fundamentals
Communication-Partner Training
Responsive and Engaging Communication Partners
Supporting Adult Learners to Teach AAC
Models of Support
Designing Effective Learning Opportunities for Communication Partners
Barriers to AAC Implementation
Opportunity Barriers Include Attitude, Knowledge, Skill, Practice, and Policy Barriers
                 Case Study: JT 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations for Training
Next Steps
References

Chapter 34. Communication Partner Training for Staff 
Jill E. Senner and Matthew R. Baud
Fundamentals
                 Case Study: BT 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
AAC Considerations
Next Steps
References

Chapter 35. Tele-AAC: The Basics 
Michelle Boisvert
Fundamentals
Methods of Tele-AAC Service Delivery
Hardware and Software Considerations
                 Case Study: JS 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
Tele-AAC Setup for Optimal Visual Access
Next Steps
References

Chapter 36. Tele-AAC for Service Delivery 
Michelle Boisvert
Fundamentals
                 Case Study: JS 
Clinical Profile and Communication Needs
The AAC System or Service
Next Steps
References

Essay 20. Clinical Considerations and AAC: Building My AAC Village 
Tannalynn Neufeld

Index 

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