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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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Core Vocabulary communication board

Pulled from many sources, this 49-location core vocabulary board was designed for language modeling at the 1-word and 2-word stage using SymbolStix. The activity row at the top provides a few extra words that might be helpful in reading a book.

If you are a TouchChat user, HERE is a link to this vocabulary (just a single page you can duplicate and/or modify up or down as you please) to save to your iPad with the TouchChat app using iTunes file sharing.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Android Switch Access from AbleNet

Android Switch Access - Now Available!
Yes, you read that correctly. The new Android Lollipop (5.0) has switch access built into the mobile operating system! This new feature in the Android mobile operating system is a tremendous step forward for Google, and will help provide individuals with severe physical disabilities an assortment of options for switch accessible tablets and mobile phones.

Before upgrading to Android Lollipop, verify that all critical applications and operating system functions are available in the latest edition of Android Lollipop. In many cases, it may be prudent to demo new features found in Android Lollipop at a local retailer near you before upgrading.
Download Our Guide to Switch  Access for Android Lollipop!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Medicare Rescinds Speech-Generating Device Policies (from ASHA)

Medicare Rescinds Speech-Generating Device Policies 

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has informed ASHA that they are rescinding the policies from the February Durable Medical Equipment (DME) contractors “Coverage Reminder” that required speech-generating devices (SGDs) to undergo product approval and reclassification, and are opening up the National Coverage Determination for a 30-day comment period ending December 6, 2014.

This decision is consistent with the recommendations that ASHA proposed to CMS in a September 24, 2014, meeting with CMS officials. The capped-rental rule, forcing Medicare beneficiaries to rent the SGD for 13 months before ownership is transferred, is still in effect.

ASHA will continue to work with the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Association and other key stakeholders for coordinated comments and revision recommendations.

ASHA’s Special Interest Group 12 (Augmentative and Alternative Communication), ASHA staff, and SGD manufacturers will be hosting a discussion regarding SGD policies during the ASHA Convention on Thursday, November 20, from 7:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m., in the Hyatt Regency Ballroom K. This is an opportunity for ASHA members to ask panelists about Medicare policies related to SGDs. This is not a session offered for CEUs.

Re-Post: Aided Lang Input in Conversation (VIDEO)

Thank you PrAACtical AAC for your amazing dedication to getting the good news of AAC up online! (Re-Post from 11/16/14)

Video of the Week: Aided Language Input in Conversation

It’s a great day to see AAC strategies in action. Today, the AAC Chicks from Dynamic Therapy Assoiates are back with another prAACtical video about using aided language input in conversation.
Video of the Week: Aided Language Input in Conversation
Direct link to video:

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

AAC Sessions at ASHA Orlando (Nov 20-22)

Not able to make it to the annual American Speech-Language Hearing Association Convention in Orlando, FL, this year? Here are some resources online to help you feel closer to the action on the ground. 

Follow the links below to read/view more from these notable presenters. I only made it through Friday morning's scheduled sessions and had to stop myself. You can continue down the rabbit hole by copying these and more presenter name(s) and ", AAC" into your favorite search engine. I know you will be impressed with what you find! Link to the complete Pocket Guide to the Convention to view all of the "AAC" coded sessions, HERE.

AAC Session 1002
Language Sample Collection & Analysis With People Using AAC Systems: Considerations for Ongoing Assessment (Gail Van Tatenhove, Meher Banajee, Tracy Kovach, Jade Coston, Juliann Woods)

AAC Session 1004 
Strategies for SLPs Working With Students With AAC Needs in Schools (Dan Phillips, Martha “Michaela” Sullivan & Gloria Soto

AAC Session 1049
AAC Revolutionizes Aphasia Therapy: Changes in Cortical Plasticity & Spoken Language Production (Aimee Dietz, Jennifer Vannest, Joe Collier, et. al.)

AAC Session 1050
Teaching Preschoolers With Unintelligible Speech to Produce Rule-Based Sentences: AAC Solutions (Cathy Binger & Jennifer Kent-Walsh, et. al.)

AAC Session 1051
The Successful Employment of Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder Who Use AAC (Laura Richardson & David McNaughton

AAC Session 1096
Giving Voice to Augmented Communicators (Rupal Patel, Northeastern U)

AAC Session 1097
Outcomes of Clinician Training for Integrating Assistive Technology for Cognition in the Rehabilitation of mTBI (Carole Roth, Michelle Wild)

AAC Session 1301
Embedding Augmentative & Alternative Communication in Naturalistic Teaching Sessions (Lauren Hampton, Courtney Wright, Elizabeth Fulller, Ann Kaiser)

AAC Session 1303
Revisiting the Definition of Communicative Competence for Individuals who require AAC: Research & Evidence-Based Practice (Janice Light; David McNaughton)
  • Read and view previous webcasts and ASHA handouts from Light, HERE

Download the ASHA Pocket Planner HERE and browse all of the sessions with the "AAC" topic code and continue the fun. 

Maybe there will be access to handouts or slideshows available after the fact. Keep your eyes open online and let the SCAAC-Network know what you find (email SCAAC-N, CLICK HERE).

If it's any consolation, the convention will be in Denver, CO, November 12-14, 2015. A little closer to home for us CA-types.