The RERC on AAC is a collaborative center committed to advancing knowledge and producing innovative engineering solutions in augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). The RERC on AAC will support a research and development program that addresses three areas of rehabilitation science and engineering:
- Improving access to technologies through exploration of innovative approaches and through integration of multi-modalities;
- Developing innovative language support technologies, including natural language processing and computer-mediation, to support effective communication for children and adults with limited access to language;
- Improving the human computer interface to reduce cognitive visual processing demands and enhance communication performance.
We also will support a range of training and dissemination activities. Our goal is that the AAC technologies and knowledge generated by the RERC on AAC will enable individuals with complex communication needs to achieve the basic human right of communication, and to maximize their participation in education, employment, health and community activities.
At the 2019 ASHA Conference, Mandak and colleagues explored a new multimodal access technology which integrated eye-gaze and scanning with two adults with cerebral palsy.
Laubscher et al. examined the effects of video VSDs and instruction on communication between a child with ASD and a peer with typical development during play.
At the 2019 ASHA Conference, Barwise and colleagues used eye-tracking technology to investigate how individuals with Down Syndrome interact with AAC displays.
The TAT4AAC is a new resource to help us better understand the cognitive demands of various AAC technologies.
There will be a wide range of presentations on RERC on AAC projects at the 2019 Annual ASHA Convention in Orlando, FL.
Eddy and colleagues examined trends in inclusion and description of study participants with disabilities across six International BCI Meetings from 1999 to 2016.
Holyfield et al. investigated the use of video visual scene displays (VSDs) with the Transition to Literacy (T2L) feature on the single word reading of children with multiple disabilities.
Holyfield et al. investigated the use of VSDs with dynamic text on the single-word reading of adults with IDD.
O’Neill et al. investigated visual attention to complex AAC VSDs by participants with and without developmental disabilities.
The five papers from the State of the Science Conference have received over 25,000 downloads since they were published in a special issue of the AAC journal.