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“A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words.” An AAC Intervention to increase participation for children

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Aim: The aim of the current research study was to design, implement and evaluate an exploratory photography intervention to increase communication and social participation skills for children with complex communication needs (CCN) in interactions with same-age peers. The role of photography in the current study was to serve as an enhancement to increase opportunities for children with disabilities. The study also aimed to identify strategies and activities to increase skills and abilities related to the use of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). The intervention was designed to be flexible enough to accommodate individual student communication goals.
Method: This descriptive research utilized a case-by-case, pre/post test design. Children participated in a series of six sessions including a baseline session, four intervention sessions and a follow-up. Children were paired with a peer and completed structured photography activities. Data for interaction variables including length of interactions, number of turns taken, reciprocity of turns and opportunities within activities are compared to a baseline without the activities.
Results: Data reported will focus on applications with a 4 year-old girl with agenesis of the corpus callosum and a same aged peer and include extensions with other children.
Conclusion: The results of this study will inform professionals about potential activities utilizing photography that can facilitate increased opportunities for participation for children with CCN. The workshop introduces the photography intervention and shares the program’s implementation procedures with the audience. Applications will be illustrated through examples collected as part of the current research study.


Jamie Boster    
Ohio University
United States

John McCarthy    
Ohio University
United States


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