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An Immersive Tele-AAC Program

Module 2: Preparing for the Stakeholders

Section 2.1: Tele-AAC Camp for the Campers

This section goes over the process of establishing the online program for the campers. We talk about our “thematic map” and how we plan to accommodate a variety of learners.


Critical thinking questions and learning objectives for this section are:

  • Elaborate on why themes are important;

  • Describe how both synchronous and asynchronous tele-AAC work in concert with one another to support overall learning; and

  • List ways in which the structure of camp was recreated in a virtual world.


In this section, Hillary and Nerissa take us through how they prepared for the learners by focusing on the curriculum through careful consideration of themes, vocabulary, icons and images, as well as pre-recorded lessons and immersive experiences. 


This module of the webinar goes over the overarching plan of preparing for each of the stakeholders participating in and impacted by the immersive program.

After you have watched the video, think about:

  1. Why embedding icons can be important and beneficial for individuals and their communication partner?

  2. How environmental engineering occurs in a virtual, online platform?

  3. Whether or not the content means something different in a virtual environment versus in-person environment.

Section 2.2: Supports for Individuals Using AAC

Section 2.2: Supports for Individuals Using AAC

In this section Hillary and Nerissa talk about how they constructed various tools to support the individuals using AAC. 


Critical thinking questions and learning objectives for this section are:

  • Describe why additional communication supports, outside of what the individual is already using, are critical;

  • Detail ways to minimize the technical complexity inherent to tele-AAC service delivery through use of various tools; and

  • List ways in which communication supports and behavior supports differ, and how these empower and support individuals in a tele-environment.


In this section, Hillary and Nerissa go into detail regarding the various kinds of supports created to help support the individuals’ participation in and communication during online AAC Camp. They show you the communication and learning kits, and discuss the rationale behind the various tools created.

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They talk about a tiered approach to the development of the tools, where different tools are used for different purposes. 

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After you have watched the video, answer:

  1. Hillary mentions that having access to various communication tools can help support an individual’s sense of autonomy, why do you think this is?

  2. What would your learning kits look like for the work that you do and the people with whom you work?

  3. Think broadly about what it means to “access” the content, and how was this accounted for in this online program?

Section 2.3: Tele-AAC Camp for the Communication Partners

In this section, Hillary and Nerissa talk about how online AAC camp was designed to support the communication partners, and their approach to involving and supporting these critical stakeholders.


Critical thinking questions and learning objectives for this section are:

  • Explain how did this clinical team “level the playing field” to accommodate communication partners of varying experience and comfort;

  • What were considered the “four fundamentals” for communication partners? and

  • List at least three ways in which information and content was delivered to the communication partners.


In this section, Hillary and Nerissa bring to life the importance of the communication partner in the context of successful use and implementation of AAC. 


In thinking about AAC in general, we are reminded of some of the very basics: Using AAC is a three-way process between the individual, their communication partner, and the AAC tool. One cannot plan for an individual using AAC without planning for their communication partner. 


Communication partners are oftentimes the one to create an opportunity where AAC can be used, and to adjust the environment to help ensure that communication is essential. Additionally, the communication partner’s use of different strategies, can help an individual’s learning and advancement with using AAC.


Hillary and Nerissa remind us of how they sought to not only create a program for individuals using AAC, but a strong program (and curriculum, per se) for the communication partners as well. 


They discuss how they planned to support the learning and engagement of the caregivers, siblings, and professionals involved in supporting the participation of the individuals using AAC. In addition, they detail what information they shared with the communication partners, and the ways in which they shared the content. 

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After you have watched the video, think about:

  1. Why is “community” especially important for communication partners supporting individuals using AAC?

  2. Why does simply making technology available not necessarily mean someone is able to “access’ it, and what can we do about this?

  3. What does tele-engagement mean and why is this an important piece of the puzzle?

Section 2.4: Tele-AAC Camp for the Clinical Team

In this section, Hillary and Nerissa discuss establishing a robust program for the pre-professional clinicians and clinical team involved in camp.


Critical thinking questions and learning objectives for this section are:

  • List at least three ways in which the clinical team was supported differently than the communication partners;

  • Describe how the virtual environment made way for more intensive support for the pre-professional clinicians; and 

  • Explain what could and could not be learned about AAC clinical work in a virtual environment.


Hillary and Nerissa shift to talking about how their clinical team (pre-professional graduate student clinicians and the lead supervising clinicians) were accounted for when planning and preparing an online AAC camp. They go over how the information and support was different for this group when compared to the communication partners. 


There are elements on an on-site program that cannot be replicated in a virtual world. However, Hillary and Nerissa talk about what surprised them about the online learning experience, and what this did for the learning and performance of the pre-professional clinicians. 


Additionally, there is mention of how the supervisory process changed and the good that came for this adjustment (for both the pre-professionals and their supervising clinicians). 

After you have watched the video, think about:

  1. How and why asynchronous pre-recorded activities supported the learning and overall implementation of content for the clinical team?

  2. Why did working in a virtual environment require more forethought, as mentioned, and how can this impact our practice, leadership, and mentorship in either on-site or virtual settings?

  3. What did the virtual environment do to impact the learning and skill acquisition of the clinicians involved in the program?

Cancellation Policy: Commūnicāre, LLC reserves the right to cancel a class based on low registration. If a class is cancelled, participants will be notified and can either transfer their registration to another class or request a refund. 


Refund Policy: Refunds will not be issued if a participant is unable to attend a class. However, registration may be transferred to another class, if available.

Complaint Policy: If you are not satisfied with the course you purchased, or have questions, comments or concern, please contact our Professional Development Coordinator

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