PECS is a strategy that incorporates the use of visual images and pictures on cards to facilitate and provide an alternative means of communication for those who experience problems with spoken communication. It is often used in conjunction with other therapies, such as EIBI (link to EIBI). The child using PECS learns to associate pictures as visual representations of real life objects and then learns to use the cards to communicate needs/desires etc. For example, a child may be learning to request juice. The child learns that by providing their parent with the juice picture card, they will most likely be given a glass of juice. PECS can also be used to teach choice making. For example a parent might present the picture cards for juice and milk, and then ask which one they would prefer.

Number of participation hours required

Under 20 20+
Being a method of communication, this requires daily use and reinforcement.

Cost of intervention per week

$0-$30 $30 – $80 $80 – $100 $100 – $120 $120 +
Initial training costs and materials can be high.

Home, Clinic, or both?

Home-based Clinic or centre-based Both or it doesn’t matter.
Possible pros of this intervention Possible cons of this intervention
Positive reinforcement for desired behaviours may encourage further communication.
Ongoing costs may be lower than other intervention options.
Initial training cost can be high. Parents are required to expand card library as required.