Acquisition, Preference, and Follow-up Data on the Use of Three AAC Options by Four Boys With Developmental Disability/Delay


The authors compared how quickly four boys with developmental disability or delay learned to use manual signing (MS), picture exchange (PE), and a speech-generating device (SGD) to request the continuation of toy play. Opportunities to choose to use MS, PE, and SGD were included to determine whether the boys showed a preference for using one of these options. Follow-up sessions occurred at 12, 15, and 18 months postintervention. With intervention, three of the four participants learned to use each option, but one child only learned to use PE. Trials to criterion across children ranged from 22 to 28 for the SGD, from 12 to 60 for PE, and from 21 to 64 trials for MS. For the three participants who reached criterion with each AAC system, maintenance results were best for PE and SGD. Preference assessments during follow-up showed that participants most often chose SGD. The findings suggest that there may be value in assessing a child’s preference for different AAC options as part of the postintervention follow-up process.


Achmadi, D., Sigafoos, J., van der Meer, L., Sutherland, D., Lancioni, G. E., O’Reilly, M. F., . . . Marschik, P. B. (2014). Acquisition, preference, and follow-up data on the use of three AAC options by four boys with developmental disability/delay. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities, 26, 565–583. doi:10.1007/s10882-014-9379-z