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Aided Communication Intervention Before Assessment: A Case Study of a Child with Cerebral Palsy

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TitleAided Communication Intervention Before Assessment: A Case Study of a Child with Cerebral Palsy
Publication TypeJournal Article
AbstractDescribed is a case study in which a 6-year-old, functionally nonspeaking girl with severe spastic-athetoid cerebral palsy underwent 7 months of augmentative communication intervention involving parallel training in eye-gaze communication and switch-access programming. Typical of many severely physically impaired augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) clients, the child’s lack of a reliable means of communication at the outset of intervention precluded insight into her true developmental status. Assessment was further confounded by the fact that English was the child’s second language. AAC intervention was therefore initiated on the basis of minimal diagnostic input. Despite this fact, all AAC programming was conducted in a contextually relevant, highly interactive format using aided language stimulation techniques to foster frequent interactive symbolic use. Results of intervention were quite dramatic with both picture symbol communication and functional speech emerging. With the attainment of a reliable means of communication, professionals were eventually able to evaluate the child’s true developmental status. A severely physically impaired child, initially believed to be mentally retarded, was ultimately determined to be of normal intelligence.
AuthorsGoossens, C.
Year of Publication1989
PublicationAAC
Volume5
Issue1
Pages14-26
ISSN0743-4618 (print) 1477-3848 (online)
Publisher DOIhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1080/07434618912331274926
Keywords (MeSH)cerebral palsy, child, communication
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