Typical Toddlers' Participation in “Just-in-Time” Programming of Vocabulary for Visual Scene Display Augmentative and Alternative Communication Apps on Mobile Technology: A Descriptive Study Purpose Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) promotes communicative participation and language development for young children with complex communication needs. However, the motor, linguistic, and cognitive demands of many AAC technologies restrict young children's operational use of and influence over these technologies. The purpose of the current study is to better ... Research Article
Research Article  |   August 15, 2017
Typical Toddlers' Participation in “Just-in-Time” Programming of Vocabulary for Visual Scene Display Augmentative and Alternative Communication Apps on Mobile Technology: A Descriptive Study
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Christine Holyfield
    Pennsylvania State University, State College
  • Kathryn Drager
    Pennsylvania State University, State College
  • Janice Light
    Pennsylvania State University, State College
  • Jessica Gosnell Caron
    Pennsylvania State University, State College
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Christine Holyfield: christineholyfield@gmail.com
  • Editor: Shelley Gray
    Editor: Shelley Gray×
  • Associate Editor: Cynthia Press
    Associate Editor: Cynthia Press×
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 15, 2017
Typical Toddlers' Participation in “Just-in-Time” Programming of Vocabulary for Visual Scene Display Augmentative and Alternative Communication Apps on Mobile Technology: A Descriptive Study
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, August 2017, Vol. 26, 737-749. doi:10.1044/2017_AJSLP-15-0197
History: Received December 27, 2015 , Revised June 11, 2016 , Accepted July 11, 2016
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, August 2017, Vol. 26, 737-749. doi:10.1044/2017_AJSLP-15-0197
History: Received December 27, 2015; Revised June 11, 2016; Accepted July 11, 2016

Purpose Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) promotes communicative participation and language development for young children with complex communication needs. However, the motor, linguistic, and cognitive demands of many AAC technologies restrict young children's operational use of and influence over these technologies. The purpose of the current study is to better understand young children's participation in programming vocabulary “just in time” on an AAC application with minimized demands.

Method A descriptive study was implemented to highlight the participation of 10 typically developing toddlers (M age: 16 months, range: 10–22 months) in just-in-time vocabulary programming in an AAC app with visual scene displays.

Results All 10 toddlers participated in some capacity in adding new visual scene displays and vocabulary to the app just in time. Differences in participation across steps were observed, suggesting variation in the developmental demands of controls involved in vocabulary programming.

Conclusions Results from the current study provide clinical insights toward involving young children in AAC programming just in time and steps that may allow for more independent participation or require more scaffolding. Technology designed to minimize motor, cognitive, and linguistic demands may allow children to participate in programming devices at a younger age.

Acknowledgments
This research was funded through National Institutes of Health Grant 1R43HD059231-01A1, SBIR Phase II:“PlayTalk” Communication Software for Children with Complex Communication Needs, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. In addition, Christine Holyfield and Jessica Gosnell Caron were also supported by funding from the Penn State AAC Leadership Project, a doctoral training grant funded by U.S. Department of Education Grant H325D110008.
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