Implementation Toolkit

Valuable, real-life resources and suggestions for implementing AAC to encourage successful communication. The Implementation Toolkit is a collection of video and print-based resources created to help you facilitate successful interaction using AAC.

Aphasia and AAC

Communication challenges associated with aphasia can significantly impact one's ability to interact with others and participate in desired activities. The resources in this learning path reveal the role of AAC tools and techniques for individuals with aphasia as well as providing support to implement AAC successfully.

Aphasia and AAC Overview
Aphasia is a language disorder that results from a neurological event. What does that mean? What is a language disorder and what does it affect? How can AAC help an individual with aphasia. This 14 minute video will answer these questions.

Resource Type: Video

Explaining Aphasia - Answers to Student Questions
Dealing with aphasia in a loved one is difficult whether you are an adult or a child. Sharing information, feelings and a plan for assisting with communication can make this challenging time easier. This book was created to answer questions that students grade 4 and up may have about aphasia including what aphasia is and how it may affect their loved one as well as introduce methods to support communication. Read it with the student using it as a stepping stone to dialogue.

Resource Type: File

Communication Partner Strategies for People with Aphasia
All of us benefit from support from our communication partners - asking questions, providing words when we can't think of them prompting us to provide more detail. The issues with language experienced by those with aphasia make the support of communication partners not just beneficial but essential. This 27-minute video highlights the important role of the communication partner and communication partner techniques that are of particular benefit to individuals with aphasia.

Resource Type: Video

Multiple Communication Methods used by Adults - Video Examples
In this 4 ½ minute video, you will see examples of adults with aphasia and ALS learning to communicate and successfully communicating with a variety of methods (e.g., devices, speech, pointing, gestures, etc.). These video examples accompany our print resources on multiple communication methods.

Resource Type: Video

Myths – AAC will Keep Someone from Talking
Updated! When introduction of AAC is suggested, the concern regarding its affect on speech is often raised. This resource shares research demonstrating that AAC does not impede speech production but, in many cases, introduction of AAC actually results in gains in speech production.

Resource Type: File

Myths – Some Speech Means AAC is Not Needed
Many people believe AAC is not needed if an individual has some speech (e.g., a few words, some sentences) and is understood by certain communication partners or in some environments. This AAC Myth Revealed demonstrates that some speech may not be enough and that AAC has a place in an overall communication system.

Resource Type: File

Myths – Too Soon for AAC after Neurological Event
Use of AAC is often relegated to “last resort” status after stroke or brain injury. This resource challenges this myth and suggests that AAC should be part of the rehabilitation equation from the beginning.

Resource Type: File

Myths - Ability to Express Basic Needs Means AAC is Not Needed
Meeting basic nutritional and biological needs is an important part of communication as it helps us to maintain our physical well-being. Communication is much more than meeting basic needs. This myth will explore the effect of social isolation on augmented communicators and how AAC can meet those communication needs.

Resource Type: File

Myths - AAC will Fix Communication Difficulties
Increasingly the benefit of AAC is revealed through current research and personal stories. What may not be demonstrated is the process behind the success. This "AAC Myth Revealed" shares some of the issues and challenges which may need to be addressed when implementing AAC.

Resource Type: File

Article-at-a-Glance - Living Successfully with Aphasia
Review of: Holland, Audrey. L (2006). Living Successfully with Aphasia: Three Variations of the Theme. Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation, 13(1): 44-51. This article was written to chronicle the lives of three individuals living successfully with aphasia. It addresses five specific factors that are believed to be common themes in achieving this success and compares the traits those exhibited by a larger group of individuals experiencing greater challenges in living with aphasia."

Resource Type: File

Article-at-a-Glance –Characteristics Leading to Productive Lives after Acquired Brain Injury
Review of the following article: Fraas, M., & Calvert, M. (2009). The use of narratives to identify characteristics leading to a productive life following acquired brain injury. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 18 , 315-328. This study identified characteristics of individuals with acquired brain injury due to stroke, trauma, tumor, etc. that appeared to lead to fruitful and fulfilling life following onset.

Resource Type: File

Articles at a Glance - Valued Life Activities for Young Adults and Older Adults
Summary of following article: Ditto, P. H., Druley, J. A., Moore, K. A., Danks, J. H, & Smucker, W. D. (1996). Fates worse than death: The role of valued life activities in health state evaluations. Health Psychology, 15, 332-343.

Resource Type: File

Article-at-a-Glance - Impact of Personally Relevant or Context-based Pictures in a Structured Task for People with Aphasia
Review of: McKelvey, M. L., Hux, K., Dietz, A., and Beukelman, D. R. (2010). Impact of personal relevance and contextualization on word-picture matching by people With aphasia. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 19, 22-33. The researchers were attempting to understand the impact of personally relevant and context-based images on the performance of word-picture matching for individuals with severe aphasia.

Resource Type: File

Article-at-at-Glance - Can Individuals with Non-Fluent Aphasia Learn to Use AAC
Review of: Hough, M. & Johnson, R.K. (2009). Use of AAC to enhance linguistic communication skills in an adult with chronic severe aphasia. Aphasiology, 23: 7, 965-976. The study was conducted to better understand if individuals with nonfluent aphasia can learn to use AAC systems.

Resource Type: File

Articles at a Glance - Impact of Pictures and Text on Interaction of those with Severe Aphasia
Review of the following article: Garrett, K. & Huth, C. (2002). The impact of graphic contextual information and instruction on the conversational behaviors of a person with severe aphasia. Aphasiology, 16, 523-536.

Resource Type: File

Article-at-a-Glance –Impact of Patient Communication on Risk of Preventable Adverse Effects in Acute Care
Review of the following article: Bartlett, G., et.al. (2008). Impact of patient communication problems on the risk of preventable adverse events in acute care settings. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 178 (12). Retrieved December 4, 2009 from http://www.cmaj.ca/cgi/reprint/178/12/1555.pdf. Results of this study highlight the correlation between communication problems and preventable adverse effects in acute care settings.

Resource Type: File

AAC Needs Assessment
There is more to an AAC assessment than understanding an individual’s skills. Identifying appropriate AAC tools, techniques and strategies requires knowledge of an individual’s communication needs. This AAC Needs Assessment provides a thorough and quick overview of an individual’s needs across environments.

Resource Type: File

Communication Partner Preparation – Activities to InterAACT – Young Adult
List of activities in which a Young Adult AAC User can communicate for which vocabulary already exists in InterAACT. View our Communication Partner Preparation Video as well as additional print resources in the Implmentation Toolkit (e.g., Communication Partner Preparation - Learning Quickfires, Communication Partner Preparation - Introducing AAC into an Activity Checklist).

Resource Type: File

Communication Partner Preparation – Activities to InterAACT - Adult
List of activities in which an Adult AAC User can communicate for which vocabulary already exists in InterAACT. View our Communication Partner Preparation Video as well as additional print resources in the Implmentation Toolkit (e.g., Communication Partner Preparation - Learning Quickfires, Communication Partner Preparation - Introducing AAC into an Activity Checklist).

Resource Type: File

Personal Narratives – Telling My Stories – Instructional Video
Communicating personal narratives allows us to initiate and deepen relationships with others and encourages growth in communication and language skills. This 27-minute instructional video provides an introduction to personal narratives, factors to consider when programming and demonstrates options for programming in DynaVox devices. See accompanying print resources.

Resource Type: Video

Personal Narratives – Decision-making for Adults
This handout and worksheet provides an introduction to personal narratives for adults as well as a process for deciding how to program them. Accompanies our instructional video – Personal Narratives – Telling My Stories.

Resource Type: File

Personal Narratives in Symbol/Photo Pages
Use this resource to learn how to program personal narratives into devices with symbol/photo pages (V/Vmax, M3 and Palm3). Accompanies our instructional video – Personal Narratives – Telling My Stories.

Resource Type: File

Training Manual: Visual Scene Displays
This training manual for the Visual Scene Display user in the V/Vmax for individuals with aphasia and brain injury provides strategies for effectively using and programming this pages set (based on the research of David Beukelman, PhD et. al.). Accompanies our instructional video – Personal Narratives – Telling My Stories.

Resource Type: Url

Strategies for Introduction - Sharing Photographs Structured Script
Structured script to encourage interaction while looking at photographs.

Resource Type: File

Strategies for Introduction - Sharing Photographs Situational Script
Situational script to encourage interaction while looking at photographs.

Resource Type: File

Strategies for Introduction - Reading Newspaper Structured Script
Structured script to encourage interaction while reading the newspaper.

Resource Type: File

Strategies for Introduction - Reading Newspaper Situational Script
Situational script to encourage interaction while reading the newspaper.

Resource Type: File

Updating Vocabulary
Explains the importance of updating the vocabulary in an AAC User’s device

Resource Type: File

Visual Scene Display—Adult (Aphasia and Traumatic Brain Injury)
People with chronic, severe aphasia or traumatic brain injury (TBI) face a significant challenge when communicating multiple meanings to multiple people in multiple settings. To address these challenges, DynaVox and the AAC-RERC (led by Dr. Beukelman) collaborated on a technology transfer project and are releasing an exciting new framework that allows contextually rich visual images to represent meaning and support page navigation using the DynaVox V and Vmax devices. Attend this 1 1/2 hour session to learn more about this project and see the resulting framework.

Resource Type: Url

AAC for Aphasia: A Review of Visual Scenes Display Project
This 65 minute AAC-RERC webcast presents the research and development process undertaken by the team at University of Nebraska - Lincoln lead by Dr. David Beukelman to address the communication needs of individuals with aphasia as a part of the Visual Scenes Display Project.

Resource Type: Url

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Implementation Toolkit

The Implementation Toolkit is a collection of video and print-based resources created to help you facilitate successful interaction using AAC.

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