Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)

Also known as: AAC

What is augmentative and alternative communication?

Communication systems, strategies and tools that replace or supplement natural speech are known as augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). These tools support a person who has difficulties communicating using speech in a conventional manner.


What happens during the procedure?

A speech-language pathologist will work closely with the Occupational and Physical therapist, as well as, the patient and loved ones to develop, implement and teach alternate forms of communication. AAC incorporates all the tools and strategies a person can use to communicate when they are not able to speak. For example:

Unaided AAC – or AAC that does not require a physical aid or tool can include:

  • Facial expressions, body language, Gestures, sign language

Aided AAC – or AAC that uses tools or materials can include:

  • Picture symbols, Choice cards, Keyboards, Speech-generating devices, or AAC apps on mobile devices.


Is any special preparation needed?

Yes, a speech and language evaluation is needed as support in determining the best form of augmentative and alternative communication system and or strategies.


What are the risk factors?

There are no risk factors related to augmentative and alternative communication.


Reviewed by: Keysla Lee

This page was last updated on: 11/9/2018 1:58:37 PM

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