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Visual scenes - an alternative to displays organised in grids?

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Language concepts embedded in photos of well known scenes are called Visual Scene Displays - VSD. The aim of this report is to gather knowledge about advantages and disadvantages according to VSD’s, to make sure that we choose the right type of AAC display for children with complex communicative needs.
In this review report a number of articles published 2003 - 2014 are presented and discussed.

The results of the reviewed studies show that human eyes read photos with many details quicker than many separate pictures organised in a grid. Details in the photo lead to a quicker decoding of the picture by showing relations in size and functionality of the objects. The number of hotspots does not increase the complexity of the display.
In addition, the results show that people do not fix the gaze only at faces, but they read details and backgrounds in the photo. Studies comparing children's acquisition of VSDs versus grid format show that VSDs are a better option for children between 2 1/2 and 4 to 5 years of age. Especially young children gain the largest benefits from a vocabulary presented in a meaningful context with familiar, whole objects and persons. People who by different reasons cannot relate to traditionally AAC-displays can be helped by VSDs.


Sara Ljungberg    
Region Skåne


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