The Southern California Augmentative and Alternative Communication Network... a support group for professional development, problem solving, leadership, mentoring, and training in the use of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) to develop communication in non-speaking and minimally verbal individuals in the Southern California Region.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

PRC Consultant Corner

PRC Solutions for Successful AAC  
New!  Accent™1200, Accent™1000, and Accent™700

With changes in technology and equipment, access has become extremely important for success with AAC.  The Accent™ family of PRC devices ( Accent™1200 and Accent™ 1000 and Accent™ 700) will feature capacitive touch-screens.  This means they can be controlled with a very light touch of a finger.  Capacitive touch-screens are commonly found on many cell phones and tablet computers.  Individuals who are accustomed to the light touch required to activate a capacitive touch-screen will appreciate the ease-of-use of this new feature.  Individuals who are accustomed to resistive touch-screens, such as those on PRC's legacy devices (i.e. SpringBoard™, Vantage™, and ECO™) know that they require a slightly higher level of pressure to activate than the new capacitive touch-screens.  Fortunately, a slight setting adjustment in the Accent devices can help make the screen less sensitive.  To adjust the capacitive screen:

  • Go to the Toolbox
  • Choose the Access Method Menu
  • Change Acceptance Time to .20

This adjustment will make the Accent's screen feel more like that of a SpringBoard, Vantage, or ECO.  If your touch-screen is still too sensitive, you can try increasing the acceptance time until you reach a level that works best for the device user.  This small adjustment can make all the difference in assessing the Accent.  If the device user has difficulty with accidentally activating the same key twice, the Release Time function can also be adjusted.  Here's how:

  • Go to the Toolbox
  • Choose the Access Method Menu
  • Increase the Release Time (increase up to .5 or higher), and the key will not be activated again due to a secondary selection right after the first.
Another suggestion is to try a TouchGuide™, as well, as it can increase accuracy in pushing the desired key, and provides some tactile feedback when finding the desired key.

If you have any questions or would like to explore the variety of access methods offered in PRC devices, please contact me.  I am extremely knowledgeable in regards to both language and access and can assist you in getting things as close to perfect as possible.

New!  PRC Online Order Status Center
Want to check the status of your order online?  Now you can at  The Online Order Status Center provides 24/7 access to order information simply by entering your Sales Order Number, Customer Number, or Last Name and Zip Code.  Try it today!

New! PRC Trainings Available in Your Area

Unity Language for LifeDate:  November 14, 2012
Time:  9:00am - 3:30pm
Facility:  Assistive Technology Exchange Center
Location:  Santa Ana, CA
Attend This Training

This course will focus on the features of Unity for Unity 60, 84, and 144 (Accent, ECO, or Vantage Lite devices). Participant will review overlays and icon features/functions, Unity Pattern 1 (verbs, nouns, adjectives, and adverbs) and Unity Pattern 2 (pronouns). You will also learn Unity Pattern 3 (pronoun phrases), Unity Pattern 4 (noun categories), Unity Pattern 5 (closed class categories), and strategies for teaching Unity vocabularies.

Devices for this training are not required. If you choose to bring a device or laptop computer, please bring a Vantage Lite/Vantage/Vanguard with software version 5.06 or higher; ECO with software version 2.07 or higher; Accent 1200 with software version 1.02 or higher; or laptop computer pre-loaded with the appropriate PASS Software.

Julie Dunbar, M.S., Ed.
Phone:  (800) 262-1984 Ext. 445

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