Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)

Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) encompasses a range of tools and strategies used to support and enhance communication for children who have difficulty using verbal speech. At Chicago Speech Therapy, we are dedicated to helping children express their thoughts, needs, and ideas through individualized AAC solutions.

Understanding AAC

AAC includes both low-tech and high-tech methods to assist communication:

  • Low-Tech Methods: Picture exchange systems, communication boards, and sign language.
  • High-Tech Methods: Speech-generating devices, tablets with communication apps, and other electronic devices.
  • Mid-Tech Methods: Simple electronic devices like switches that can communicate responses.
Get Started
Understanding AAC | Chicago Speech Therapy

Who May Benefit from AAC?

  • Children with limited verbal output.
  • Children with autism or related developmental delays.
  • Children with apraxia or severe speech sound disorders.
  • Children with physical limitations affecting speech production.

How AAC Can Help

AAC provides a means for children to communicate effectively, promoting independence and participation in daily activities. Our experienced speech-language pathologists assess each child’s unique needs and develop personalized AAC plans to enhance communication skills.
Who May Benefit from AAC? | Chicago Speech Therapy

What to Expect from Our AAC Services

  1. Comprehensive Evaluation: We start with a detailed assessment to determine the most appropriate AAC tools and strategies for your child.
  2. Personalized Plan: A customized AAC plan is developed, tailored to your child’s communication needs and preferences.
  3. Training and Implementation: We provide training for the child, parents, and caregivers on how to use AAC tools effectively.
  4. Ongoing Support and Progress Monitoring: We continuously monitor your child’s progress and make adjustments to the AAC plan as needed to ensure effective communication.
What to Expect from Our AAC Services | Chicago Speech Therapy

Our Approach to AAC

  • Personalized AAC Tools: We recognize that each child’s communication needs are unique and tailor their AAC methods and goals accordingly.
  • Evidence-Based Practices: Our therapists use proven methods and the latest technology to support your child’s communication development.
  • Family Involvement: We involve parents and caregivers in the AAC process to ensure consistent use and carryover at home.
  • Positive and Encouraging Environment: We create a supportive atmosphere where children feel confident using their AAC tools.
Our Approach to AAC | Chicago Speech Therapy

Benefits of AAC

  • Enhanced Communication: AAC enables children to express themselves, reducing frustration and improving social interactions.
  • Increased Independence: With the right AAC tools, children can communicate their needs and make choices independently.
  • Improved Quality of Life: Effective communication through AAC can lead to greater participation in school, home, and community activities.
If you have concerns about your child’s communication abilities and think they may benefit from AAC, contact Chicago Speech Therapy to schedule an evaluation. Our specialized services can help your child communicate more effectively, enhancing their ability to interact with others and participate in daily life.
Benefits of AAC | Chicago Speech Therapy

Types of AAC Tools We Use

  • Communication Boards: A low-tech method that uses pictures to help children communicate their needs and wants.
  • Speech-Generating Devices (SGDs): High-tech devices that produce speech output, allowing children to communicate verbally.
  • Communication Apps: Applications on tablets or other devices that facilitate communication through touch or switch access.
  • Sign Language and Gestures: Nonverbal methods of communication that can be integrated into a child’s AAC plan.
Types of AAC Tools We Use | Chicago Speech Therapy
640+ 5-Star Google Reviews | Chicago Speech Therapy

"We had the most wonderful experience with Chicago Speech Therapy! Our speech pathologist, Miss Megan, developed a bond with our son almost immediately. By week two, he would await her arrival by the window in our front door! She quickly discovered all of his favorite things and would bring so many toys of her own that would keep him engaged and wanting to talk! She gave us (parents) tons of strategies to work with on our own in between her weekly visits. Our son made consistent progress under her care and has now been released from speech therapy ~ which actually makes us so sad ~ simply because we miss Miss Megan! She basically became part of our family and will be dearly missed. I couldn’t recommend Miss Megan and Chicago Speech Therapy more!"

"The process w/ CST was smooth, from the intake process, registration, processing insurance to on-going communication. Sarah was the Speech Therapist for our 9-year-old and she established a wonderful rapport with her and gained her trust over the months. I highly recommend CST."

5-Star Google Reviews
Read More Testimonials