Peer-Mediated AAC Instruction for Young Children With Autism and other Developmental Disabilities Many young children with developmental disabilities (DD) have significant delays in social, communication, and play skills. For those children learning to use augmentative and alternative communication (AAC), successful social interactions with peers will require explicit instruction on the same system for both communication partners. Peer-mediated (PM) interventions are recommended best ... Article
Article  |   December 2012
Peer-Mediated AAC Instruction for Young Children With Autism and other Developmental Disabilities
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Kathy Thiemann-Bourque
    Juniper Gardens Children's Project,University of Kansas, Kansas City. MO
  • Disclosure: Kathy Thiemann-Bourque has no financial or nonfinancial relationships related to the content of this article.
    Disclosure: Kathy Thiemann-Bourque has no financial or nonfinancial relationships related to the content of this article.×
  • Copyright © 2012 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Article Information
Articles
Article   |   December 2012
Peer-Mediated AAC Instruction for Young Children With Autism and other Developmental Disabilities
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, December 2012, Vol. 21, 159-166. doi:10.1044/aac21.4.159
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, December 2012, Vol. 21, 159-166. doi:10.1044/aac21.4.159
Abstract

Many young children with developmental disabilities (DD) have significant delays in social, communication, and play skills. For those children learning to use augmentative and alternative communication (AAC), successful social interactions with peers will require explicit instruction on the same system for both communication partners. Peer-mediated (PM) interventions are recommended best practice based on more than 30 years of research with young children with autism and other DDs. Integrating direct AAC instruction within PM programs to advance social reciprocity in typical preschool routines is a necessary and important next step for young AAC users. In this article, I will summarize the design and outcomes of two PM AAC studies documenting positive social outcomes for preschool children with severe autism. I will also highlight strategies to recruit peers without disabilities, teach peer partners how to use AAC systems (e.g., Picture Exchange Communication System [PECS], Speech Generating Devices [SGDs]), and engineer the preschool classroom for successful AAC communication. I will describe data collection procedures for measuring changes in reciprocal child and peer social communication interactions.

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