Two Way Street specialise in supporting children and adults with complex communication needs (CCN) to make practical use of iPads and iPods for communication. The iPad may be their primary mode of communication, or an adjunct to an existing speech generating device, Key Word Sign vocabulary, communication board or book (e.g. PODD or core word board) or for more information on AAC solutions in general, click here.
How can the iPad help communication?
The iPad is a fantastic tool for people who have little or no speech (AAC users). Many iPad and iPod apps are created specifically for augmentative and alternative communication such as Proloquo2Go, TapSpeak Choice, Predictable, Verbally, TouchChat, Scene and Heard or GoTalk Now. For reliable information on the features of apps for AAC, visit Jane Farrall’s Apps for AAC page. There are also many different ways to use mainstream apps to support communicative participation for someone who uses AAC.
Making Decisions – Which app for AAC?
There is wide variety amongst the hundreds of apps available to support communication, but also a diverse range of strategies and situations for actually using them. Selecting a suitable app can be one challenge, but actually using it to have real conversations or to participate successfully within your family, school or community is the ultimate goal.
Two Way Street can provide ideas and recommendations to help you make the best use of your iPad (or iPod) for real communication. If you prefer an individual session to answer specific questions, assist with programming/set up or to help to decide if the ipad is the appropriate tool for your communication, contact us to discuss. Alternatively, sign up for a workshop.
This Flowchart for Selecting Apps for Communication (AAC) has evolved from ourAppDates group workshops to support decision making when using an iPad for communication. The flow chart begins with the individual’s primary goals for participation, and works through the steps to deciding on the best modes and strategies to achieve them. It also includes the crucial steps required after selection of an app (or other communication tool) that lead to successful and ongoing use in real life situations. The flowchart outlines what we believe are the key steps that should be taken each time a communication goal or challenge is identified.
Further detail on this process is reviewed in our workshops, and will also be available soon in an accompanying workbook format. Join our mailing list if you would like to receive notification or updates on these documents.
Example use of the Flowchart for Selecting Apps for AAC
- These documents provide a simplified example of the decision making process for app selection using the flowchart.
- CHOOSING APPS diagram v3 example watching footy
- Literate adult – Emergencies, Phone calls and Socialising with friends/family.
Other tools and information available for selecting apps.
- Jane Farrall’s Apps for AAC list
- Rubric for evaluating the language of apps for AAC (RELAAACs)
- AAC Apps Assistant
- Sorting Through AAC Apps – Marfilius and Fonner
Editorial Article: McNaugton, D & Light, J. (2013). The iPad and Mobile Technology Revolution: Benefits and Challenges for Individuals who require Augmentative and Alternative Communication. Augmentative and Alternative Communication. Vol. 29, No. 2 , Pages 107-116. Link to Summary of Article