What is an Augmentative and Alternative Communication Device?
An augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device can be a picture, word or alphabet board, or a picture, word or alphabet electronic device with voice output. AAC devices should be used with other ways of communicating: body posture, eye gaze, gestures, sign language, vocalizations, and spoken words to maximize language and communication skills. Augmentative communication can be used by children and adults alike.
What is the goal of communication?
The goal is to be able to communicate in a functional manner throughout the day. AAC devices are tools used to learn language, functional communication and literacy skills.
Will an augmentative and alternative communication device make a child stop using natural speech?
Not at all! Many studies have been done on this topic. Not one showed that children stop using natural speech when using a communication device. Research does show that children often become more verbal when using a communication device.