- unaided systems such as signing and gesture
- aided techniques ranging from picture charts to sophisticated computer technology
A.A.C. can be a way to help someone understand, as well as a means of expression.
Why would people use A.A.C.?
Some children and adults find communication difficult because they have little or no clear speech. There are many reasons why this might be the case: for example, as a result of cerebral palsy, stroke, head injury, motor neurone disease or learning disability.
The idea behind A.A.C. is to use the person’s abilities, whatever they are, to compensate for their difficulties and to make communication as quick, simple and effective as possible when speech alone does not work.
We all use aspects of A.A.C. from time to time. For example we might wave goodbye instead of saying it, point to pictures, or gesture to make ourselves understood in foreign countries. However, some people rely on A.A.C. all the time. Helping people to communicate improves their quality of life by enhancing opportunities for education, social life, jobs and ultimately independence.
What does A.A.C. include?
AAC is a whole range of different activities including facial expressions, eye pointing (looking hard at the object or person you want), gestures, signing, special symbols, spelling out a message on a letter board or computer, electronic speech output aids etc. There are two main types of AAC systems: unaided and aided. Most people who depend on AAC combine the use of unaided and aided methods.