Speech Generating Devices and other Augmentative and Alternative Communication includes electronic devices that convert text or pictures to a recorded voice, enabling the user to speak. These devices include Dynavox machines and iPads, amongst others. They offer people with little or no ability to speak the opportunity to communicate. These devices are particularly useful for children who are non-verbal. They can be used to support participation in other therapies. Some devices may rely on words being typed on a keyboard, or words/ pictures being tapped on a screen to generate speech.
- Supporting Evidence/ Likely treatment success
- The impact of using SGD and AAC with this client group has not been studied, however the obvious benefits of providing children with autism with a means to communicate, justifies the inclusion of this technology as an appropriate intervention for some children diagnosed with autism.
- Link to more information
- Video example of child with autism using SGD: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1QhuWMuWRqw
- Video example of child learning to use an iPad for speech: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AP7YJ4zUcWk
Number of participation hours required
Daily constant use is required to acquire skills for communication.
Cost of intervention per week
|$0-$30||$30 – $80||$80 – $100||$100 – $120||$120 +|
Initial equipment purchase can be thousands of dollars, however newer technology is more cost effective.
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|
|These devices offer a communication solution for children with limited or no verbal skills.
Use of these devices can encourage verbal communication.
|Some devices are very expensive. Therapy sessions are usually required to educate children and their families in the use of these devices.|