Augmentative and alternative communication


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Linda Burkhart is a well-known teacher and leader in the field of assistive technology, adaptive play, and augmentative communication for children who face significant challenges. She has developed numerous adapted equipment and innovative strategies for using these devices with children. She is the author of a number of books and software titles on topics of assistive technology and augmentative and alternative communication.


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Executive functions are the basis for goal-directed activity and include planning, monitoring, and inhibition, and language seems to play a role in the development of these functions. There is a tradition of studying executive function in both typical and atypical populations, and the present study investigates executive functions in children with severe speech and motor impairments who are communicating using communication aids with graphic symbols, letters, and/or words.


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The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) Special Interest Division 12: Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) prepared this technical report. Members of the Working Group for Division 12 included Stephen Calculator (chair, document revisions committee), Amy Finch, Susan McCloskey, Ralf Schlosser, and Cassie Sementelli.


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ASHA is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for 186,000 members and affiliates who are audiologists; speech-language pathologists; speech, language, and hearing scientists; audiology and speech-language pathology support personnel; and students. Audiologists specialize in preventing and assessing hearing and balance disorders as well as providing audiologic treatment, including hearing aids.


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