Three Ways to Use AAC Goals to Strengthen Implementation

June 20, 2016 by - Leave your thoughts

Three Ways to Use AAC Goals to Strengthen Implementation
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Concerned about AAC systems not being implemented as often as they should?

Looking for ways to help AAC learners gain additional practice?

Trying to help colleagues build the habit of actively supporting AAC learners?

You are not alone. There are several strategies to boost the use of AAC, and adding some key phrases to the goals we write is one of them. Here are some thoughts on ways to use goals to strengthen the day-to-day AAC experiences of the learners with whom we work.

Aided Language Input: Experienced AAC professionals and knowledgeable families understand that consistent use of this strategy is the most powerful way to build AAC use. If this is an issue for your AAC teams, consider adding verbiage to the goals that mandate the use of this strategy.

Examples: “Given consistent AAC modeling, ___ will…” “When provided with aided language input, ___ will…”

Frequent Implementation: Like many of us, AAC learners will be most successful when teachable moments and practice opportunities are infused throughout the day. In real life, though, we often get distracted and neglect to put this into place. How can we adjust the wording of our AAC goals to combat this reality? One idea is to add a condition that specifies where and how often the AAC teaching opportunities should occur.

Examples: “… use [skill] across 5 activities/day;”  “… demonstrate [skill] at least 3 times per activity”

Generalization: As gratifying as it is to work with AAC learners who respond positively in our therapy sessions, the real thrill comes when we observe them using their communication skills effectively with friends, family members, and our colleagues. In some cases, a tweak to the wording of our AAC goals can improve the team’s ability to involve a greater number of stakeholders and help learners generalize their skills to real-world conditions.

Examples: “…use [skill] with familiar adults and peers;” “ Given a variety of communication partners, ___ will…”

Do you have ways of using AAC goals to boost AAC implementation in your work setting? We’d love to hear about them.

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This post was written by Carole Zangari

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