Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


11th Annual Autism Conference; San Juan, Puerto Rico; 2017

Event Details

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Invited Paper Session #10
Augmentative and Alternative Communication for Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Wednesday, February 1, 2017
4:00 PM–4:50 PM
San Juan Grand Ballroom
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Instruction Level: Basic
CE Instructor: Mark O'Reilly, Ph.D.
Chair: Naomi Swiezy (HANDS in Autism, IU School of Medicine)
MARK O'REILLY (The University of Texas at Austin)
Mark O'Reilly, Ph.D., holds the Audrey Rogers Myers Centennial Professorship in Education and is Chair of the Department of Special Education at the University of Texas at Austin. His research interests include assessment and treatment of severe challenging behavior in individuals with autism spectrum disorders, design and assessment of assistive technology for individuals with multiple disabilities, and communication/social skills intervention for individuals with autism spectrum disorders.
Abstract: Many individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are candidates for augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). This presentation will review two current trends in AAC research involving persons with ASD. The first trend is the use of smartphone and tablet devices in AAC interventions. The second trend is the direct comparison of the relative efficacy of differing AAC options (e.g., comparing the use of manual signs versus picture-based communication systems versus speech-generating devices). Studies in the first group suggest that this relatively new technology can be effectively used in AAC intervention. Studies in the second group indicate differences in how quickly some individuals have learned to use different options and difference in preference for the various options. Both research trends suggest possible new directions in AAC intervention such as facilitating choice, enhancing more sophisticated communication repertoires, and promoting greater inclusion in regular life settings.
Target Audience:

Certified behavior analysts, licensed psychologists, graduate students.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, the participant will be able to: (1) identify the most frequently used AAC options for persons with ASD and the instructional methods used to teach these individuals to use AAC options.; (2) critically describe the recent comparative research evaluating AAC options with the ASD population.



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Modifed by Eddie Soh