SpeakUp Blog

To the Future and Beyond: Can Telepractice be an Effective Treatment Tool for People Who Use AAC?

By Meggin Nunamaker Introduction It is said, “Necessity is the mother of invention.” In this case, the global covid pandemic made “no contact” restrictions necessary, which was the catalyst for…

AAC Specialty Certification for Speech-Language Pathologists

by Meredith Gohsman, PhD CCC-SLP Introduction For speech-language pathologists (SLPs) in the United States, meeting the need of individuals who use augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) is one of nine…

Read More  |  Topics: Uncategorized

“I Want to Sound Like a REAL Person!”: A Woman’s Discovery of Shortcomings of AAC Devices

by Meggin Nunamaker I use AAC; I have a virtual keyboard on my laptop screen that I mouse-click letters to “type” a message. I also use a text to speech…

Physical Prompting & AAC

Most clinicians agree that having a system that does not require any prompting by an assistant or family member is the ultimate goal for an AAC system, and providing the most amount of control to the user in selecting the symbols, words, and letters in their system is paramount. However, many struggle with identifying the “right amount of support” to provide a learner when they are learning to use an AAC system. This post was inspired by questions that the USSAAC board of directors and members receive about this matter, and USSAAC offers this review of current considerations and guidance for our community.

USSAAC Leaders & Legends: David Yoder

Today, we honor legend David Yoder. David worked in what would be considered AAC (before it was called AAC) starting in the 1950s! He mentored pioneers in AAC including David Beukelman & Greg Vanderheiden. He continues to be a strong advocate for AAC, presuming potential in all learners and communicators, and equitable literacy instruction for all. We were lucky to have a conversation with this legend and hear of his experiences in AAC.

Higher tech isn’t always better tech

Greg offers a unique perspective that higher tech isn’t always better tech! He values reliability, having a face-to-face conversation with a partner that isn’t blocked by a screen, and not having to rely on materials in his communication system. As there are more and more device systems available, this perspective is one that the community should keep in mind as user needs and opinions are the most important when designing an AAC system.

AAC & Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

blog post by Betts Peters PhD. CCC-SLP Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease affecting the motor neurons that carry signals between the brain, spinal cord, and muscles.…

Read More  |  Topics: Research-in-AAC

USSAAC AAC Legends Series: The founding of USSAAC

USSAAC’s SpeakUp editorial committee is excited to introduce a new series honoring USSAAC legends! We hope to launch a quarterly post featuring an interview with one legend from USSAAC. Today,…

Woman with short blond hair and glasses in a polo shirt.

AAC Awareness Spotlight: AAC & Employment

USSAAC’s Vice-President for People Who Uses AAC & Families, Dr. Tracy Rackensberger, explains why awareness for both AAC and the employment for People with disabilities is so important. This video…

October 2021 AAC Awareness Month

On behalf of USSAAC, we want to wish you a Happy AAC Awareness month! USSAAC’s campaign for this year is Amplifying AAC Voices Campaign. As part of this campaign, the AAC Speaker Connection has been established. To support our Amplifying AAC Voices Campaign, we will also be hosting a virtual Silent Auction from October 1st to 15th. This auction is designed to involve the broader community within and beyond USSAAC members and to fund the costs of establishing and maintaining the AAC Speaker Connection.

AAC Info

There’s a broad range of strategies and devices that individuals may use for communication if their speech isn’t functional.

Read More

Become a Member

Join us in our mission to enhance the lives of people with complex communication needs.

Read More

Our Latest News

Find out about events and webinars of interest to the AAC community!

Read More