January 14-16 2020

PALSS Standard Content

Bruce Baker, AM, LHD, (Hons. caus.)
Debbie Witkowski, MA, CCC-SLP
Tracy Kovach, PhD, CCC-SLP
Russell Cross, BSc (Hons.), DipCST, MRCSLT

Each PALSS event regularly includes presentations of Bruce Baker’s work and presentations by Debbie Witkowski, Russell Cross, and Tracy Kovach. The seminar includes theoretical and practical information regarding vocabulary selection, language development and building competence for individuals who use AAC. In addition, the importance of building motor automaticity when using AAC systems will be discussed. Participants will also have the opportunity for hands-on practice with the UNITY® language system.


Guest Presenter Topic:

Bilingualism and AAC: Debunking Myths and Defining Guidelines

Ellyn McNamara, MS, CCC-SLP and Holly Delgado, MA, CCC-SLP

The evidence in bilingual AAC at this time remains scarce; however, clinicians, families and people with complex communication needs are regularly confronted with critical decisions about dual language use and AAC. Unfortunately, common myths related to language learning, bilingualism and disability often pervade this decision-making process. Misinformation may contribute to inappropriate device selection, subsequent device abandonment and ultimately inequitable communication access for bilingual AAC users. This presentation sets the record straight by debunking myths about bilingualism in AAC and establishing guiding practices for clinicians, families, and AAC users from culturally-linguistically diverse backgrounds. Then, these guidelines are applied to AAC assessment, intervention and day-to-day communication. Finally, participants will implement their new knowledge through case studies and interactive activities.