Communication Partners: OPEPP Research Brief #2

Communication Partner Strategies to Support Students Using Speech- Generating Devices in Inclusive Settings

Communication is a basic human need and right for all people. Many students with disabilities have complex communication needs – that is, they are unable to use speech alone to meet their daily communication needs, and they benefit from augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). AAC refers to other ways of communicating beyond speech, such as gestures, signs, picture symbols, and speech-generating devices. Tools such as speech-generating devices or picture symbols are referred to as aided AAC because they involve something other than the student’s body. Communication support through AAC enables students to communicate more effectively with others, build language and literacy skills, participate more fully in their schools and communities, decrease challenging behaviors, and make meaningful progress in the general curriculum.

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OPEPP Researcher ‌Interview with Elizabeth Biggs