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.

AAC and Adult Users

Use of AAC offers adults with severe communication impairments (whether congential or acquired) a way to take on or return to adult social roles and to more effectively participate in life activities. This learning path provides resources focusing on the needs of these adults and those who support them.

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

Adult Newsletter 1 - Creating Your Plan for Successful Device Use
The goal of any augmentative communication device is to allow an adult with complex communication needs to say what they want to say; using the words they want to use, in an efficient and effective manner. The key to success is to clearly define the desired communication outcomes and create a plan for achievement. Use the strategies in this newslettr to begin the process of creating a plan for successful use of your DynaVox product. If you have been using your DynaVox device for a while and have not seen the success that you had hoped, use these same strategies to get a fresh start towards successful use of your device.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 2 - Communication Partner Techniques for Supporting Individuals with Aphasia
We all can benefit from support from our communication partners asking questions, providing words when we can’t think of them or 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. The successfulness of a communication interaction is not the sole responsibility of the person with aphasia. The communication partner is equally responsible for successful interactions. Use the three tips listed below to better support communication and independence for individuals with aphasia.

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Adult Newsletter 3 - Maintaining Social Relationships
Maintaining social relationships with friends and family can sometimes be difficult for adults who have significant communication challenges. Unfortunately, many individuals may see a decrease in their social networks after they have experienced an event that has affected their ability to communicate with others (e.g., traumatic brain injury, stroke, diagnosis of a degenerative disease, etc.). However, with an augmentative communication device and some practical strategies, adults with acquired disabilities can maintain and build solid relationships.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 4 - Managing the Day with Calendars and Reminders
Many of us rely on our personal calendar to keep track of daily appointments and tasks. Your DynaVox device offers several different strategies and features that will support independence while allowing you to manage your day efficiently. Use the three tips below to learn how the calendar and reminder features of your device can be used to manage your time.

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Adult Newsletter 5 - Using the Telephone
There may be times when you will need to make or answer a phone call. Whether it is contacting your doctor to schedule an appointment or calling a grandchild who is away at college, your DynaVox device has everything you need in order to complete these tasks. You may have never thought about using your device to make phone calls, but it can be done! Use the common questions and answers below to learn more about the telephone functionality of your DynaVox device.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 6 - Word Processing and Managing Documents
There may be times when you will need to write and retrieve long documents (e.g., journaling), write and print letters, write a speech or just keep track of important information. While your device can interface with a computer and just use the word processing program there (e.g., Microsoft Word), your DynaVox device has everything you need to accomplish this task on the device itself.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 7 - Personal Narratives
Personal narratives are stories that we share with others. Narratives aren’t necessarily stories that we’ve made up, but stories about our lives, the lives of people we know or stories about things we hear or observe. Personal narratives help us establish and maintain relationships. They allow us to demonstrate who we are and show our unique personalities (e.g., humor, struggles, interests and history). In addition, narratives help us relate to the people around us. Follow the steps below to begin adding your own personal narratives to your DynaVox device.

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Adult Newsletter 8 - Controlling your Environment
Some individuals who use DynaVox products may also have difficulty using a standard remote due to motor issues caused by a stroke, degenerative disease or brain injury. Your DynaVox has built in infrared (IR) capabilities that will allow you to operate many common appliances in your home. DynaVox offers a solution.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 9 - Easy Modifications to Customize your Device: Part 1
Take advantage of some of the customization features on your DynaVox device to optimize its usefulness. Use the tips below to change or modify your device to make it work better for you.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 10 - Easy Modifications to Customize your Device: Part 2
Making your device as efficient as possible is an important first step to communication success. Take some time to learn about the different features of your device so that you can choose the ones that work best for you. The abilities of your DynaVox device are powerful and can help you reach your full communication potential. Use the tips below to start customizing today!

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Adult Newsletter 11 - Managing Daily Activities
As adults, we all have the desire to independently manage our day-to-day duties and responsibilities. The DynaVox provides the necessary communication messages needed to increase independence during daily activities for adults with significant communication challenges. While it may be tempting for the communication partner to speak for the individual with the communication disability, these individuals may still have the desire to manage their own lives and should be given the opportunity to do so. This newsletter shares how InterAACt allows individuals with speech and language disabilities to successfully communicate in everyday activities.

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Adult Newsletter 11 - Sending Email Using Your DynaVox Device
The DynaVox Series 5 software enables you to send and receive email with your Series 5 device (e.g., Maestro, V+ and Vmax+). It provides the tools for creating messages, sending and receiving messages, and sorting and saving drafts of messages that have been sent or received. You may choose to send simple text files or more complex email messages with embedded picture symbols and attached files, such as pictures, sounds, video files, or packages that contain Series 5 pages.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 13 -It's Playtime! Using your DynaVox Device to Interact with Young Children
There may be times when you will need to interact with a young child. Whether they are your own children or grandchildren or just kids running around in the neighborhood, little ones may be very intrigued by your new way of talking. InterAACt, the language framework found on DynaVox devices, provides you with some communication pages and vocabulary that will make it very easy for you to engage kids in a conversation. Use the tips below to learn about some of the “child-friendly” features of your DynaVox device.

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Adult Newsletter 14 - The Independent Adult
InterAACt, the language framework used on all DynaVox products, provides individuals who have conditions that make communication challenging (e.g., ALS, stroke, traumatic brain injury, etc.) the words and messages needed to speak their mind and participate fully in the world around them. InterAACt presents language based on the age, the environment in which communication occurs and the communication ability of the individual (e.g., emergent, context-dependent, independent).

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Adult Newsletter 15 - Directing Care and Taking Care of Business
There may be times when you will need to direct your care and take an active role in day-to-day household business. Whether you are talking with your doctor or the lawn care company, your DynaVox device can provide you with the words and messages you need to increase your independence when managing your personal business.

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Adult Newsletter 16 - The AAC Needs Assessment: A Great Place to Start
In order to successfully implement any AAC device, it is necessary to first identify the needs and strengths of the individual. The most effective way to gather this type of information is to complete a needs assessment. A needs assessment will provide a thorough overview of an individual’s communication needs (e.g., current communication partners, social activities, etc.) and challenges (e.g., telephone, large group, etc.) across environments. The goal of the needs assessment is to gather information about those things are important and meaningful to the AAC user and their family. This assessment can be used for both the initial assessment and as an ongoing treatment tool.

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Adult Newsletter 17 - Creating Meaningful Interactions for People with Aphasia using Customized Visual Scenes
Visual scenes are one of the six language elements available in Young Adult and Adult users on DynaVox Series 5 devices and are a relatively new way of presenting language on an AAC device. Visual scenes can be a photograph or line drawing. Visual scenes are a concrete and visual way to present information. Visual scenes contain communication messages that are relevant to the situation. Visual scenes set the context of communication for both the AAC user and the partner.

Resource Type: File

Adult Newsletter 18 - AAC and Aphasia: Treatment Ideas for Successful Implementation
It has been well documented that individuals with aphasia have challenges with expressing themselves and understanding others. Aphasia often affects both spoken and written language. All of these deficits combined will have a profound impact on the individual’s ability to maintain social relationships. In this document, we will discuss how to use DynaVox products to support 5 different treatment strands and provide ideas for how to use your device to practice and use these skills.

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Adult Newsletter 19 - Multiple Styles of Communication
Sometimes, our communication is formal, such as "Good morning. This is Kristin. How may I help you?". Sometimes, we are casual, like when we just say, "Mornin'!". At other times, we say things in a very unique way, such as, "What's the good word?" instead of "What's up?". How can adult AAC users communicate differently based on the formality of the conversation? How can they take advantage of the same flexibility in language that verbal adults have? Consider these five tips!

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Adult Newsletter 20 - Access Before Language: Selection Methods Part 1
Have you ever thought about what it would be like to participate in daily, routine activities without the use of your upper or lower extremities? How would you get dressed? How would you dial your phone? You might be thinking, while this would be challenging, I could still “ask” for help. So, what if, in addition to the loss of your ability to control your extremities, you lost the ability to speak? Now think of an individual with a severe communication impairment who uses a communication device to talk. Before they can communicate a message, they must be able to access the language on their device. Access comes before language. It is a crucial aspect of using any AAC system, especially for someone who is physically challenged. In this newsletter, we will discuss the role of access for the augmented communicator.

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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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