Perspectives of High Tech Augmentative and Alternative Communication Users With Cerebral Palsy at the Post-Secondary Level In this qualitative case study, we investigated the perspectives of users of high tech augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems regarding their AAC systems, suggestions for others, and their successes and barriers. The five participants in this study had cerebral palsy and were at the postsecondary education level or the ... Article
Article  |   June 01, 2012
Perspectives of High Tech Augmentative and Alternative Communication Users With Cerebral Palsy at the Post-Secondary Level
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Yoosun Chung
    Graduate School of Education, College of Education and Human Development, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
  • Michael Behrmann
    Graduate School of Education, College of Education and Human Development, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
  • Brenda Bannan
    Graduate School of Education, College of Education and Human Development, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
  • Eva Thorp
    Graduate School of Education, College of Education and Human Development, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Article Information
Augmentative & Alternative Communication / Articles
Article   |   June 01, 2012
Perspectives of High Tech Augmentative and Alternative Communication Users With Cerebral Palsy at the Post-Secondary Level
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, June 2012, Vol. 21, 43-55. doi:10.1044/aac21.2.43
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, June 2012, Vol. 21, 43-55. doi:10.1044/aac21.2.43
Abstract

In this qualitative case study, we investigated the perspectives of users of high tech augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems regarding their AAC systems, suggestions for others, and their successes and barriers. The five participants in this study had cerebral palsy and were at the postsecondary education level or the employment status. We found 5 main themes during the investigation: (a) day-to-day challenges; (b) experiences with AAC; (c) perceptions of preferable features and future AAC; (d) suggestions to others, including communication partners, professionals in the AAC field, and/or potential AAC users; and (e) adopted strategies. We will interpret these findings from three perspectives: (a) the participants' perspectives on AAC; (b) their perspectives on other people; and (c) their personal insights on themselves. Overall, participants indicated that AAC systems were indispensable in their daily lives, school settings, and work environments. However, all of the participants preferred to use their natural speech if possible, and thought that their AAC device was not a replacement for speech. Rather, they perceived their AAC device as a tool for useful and flexible communication.

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