An AAC Training Program with Emphasis on Collaboration and Inclusion In 2001, the United States Department of Education funded a 4-year personnel preparation project in the Department of Special Education and Communicative Disorders at San Francisco State University. The training program was designed to provide a specialization in augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) and inclusion. The primary goal of this ... Article
Article  |   June 01, 2004
An AAC Training Program with Emphasis on Collaboration and Inclusion
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Gloria Soto
    San Francisco State University, San Francisco, CA
Article Information
Augmentative & Alternative Communication / School-Based Settings / Articles
Article   |   June 01, 2004
An AAC Training Program with Emphasis on Collaboration and Inclusion
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, June 2004, Vol. 13, 13-17. doi:10.1044/aac13.2.13
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, June 2004, Vol. 13, 13-17. doi:10.1044/aac13.2.13
In 2001, the United States Department of Education funded a 4-year personnel preparation project in the Department of Special Education and Communicative Disorders at San Francisco State University. The training program was designed to provide a specialization in augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) and inclusion. The primary goal of this project was to prepare personnel to provide collaborative AAC services to students with significant disabilities who are served in inclusive education programs.
The number of students with significant disabilities and AAC needs served in general education settings continues to increase (e.g., Erickson & Koppenhaver, 1998; Erickson, Koppenhaver, Yoder & Nance, 1997; Koppenhaver, Spa-dorcia & Erickson, 1998; Simpson, Beukelman & Bird, 1998; Soto, Müller, Hunt, & Goetz, 2001a; Sturm, 1998). A growing body of research documents that students who use AAC can, with appropriate supports, be effectively educated in general education classrooms along with their typical peers (Hunt, Soto, Maier, Müller, & Goetz, 2002; Hunt, Soto, Maier, Doering, & Goetz, 2003). Positive long-range outcomes are identified for students who are educated in inclusive environments include increased opportunities for social interaction, higher academic achievement, and improved communication skills. Inclusive education has often been predicated upon the following beliefs:
  • All children have the potential to learn;

  • All children have the fundamental right to be educated with their peers in age-appropriate heterogeneous classrooms within their neighborhood schools; and

  • The school community is responsible for meeting the diverse educational needs of all its students regardless of their ability levels, national origins, and linguistic, cultural, and family backgrounds (Thousand & Villa, 1992).

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