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AAC and Alternative Access Methods: Options and Best Practice

Learners who have complex communication support needs and physical difficulties need access to communication aids or AAC (Augmentative and Alternative Communication) that is both efficient and reliable. There are many alternative access methods for AAC devices and communication apps and software including touch access, switch access, eye gaze access and pointer access. So, how can we ensure that learners with both communication and physical access difficulties are using the best access method to enable them to reach their communication potential in school and at home and their local community?

This course will demonstrate the range of access methods available within communication software and apps and discuss the rationale for choosing an access method to trial with a learner, based on real case studies. We will look at how to set up these access methods for individual learners and at the range of communication resources and equipment available for use when developing alternative access skills.



22nd September 2022
University of Edinburgh

Online learning
per person
Time: 4:00pm - 5:30pm

What you will learn

  • Learn about the range of alternative access methods available for learners who have complex communication support needs and physical difficulties.
  • Learn about the rationale for using a particular access method, based on real case studies.
  • Find out about the range of communication resources available.
  • Find out about alternative access equipment and mounting options.

Who is the course aimed at?

  • Primary and Secondary ASN staff
  • Special School staff
  • Support for Learning Assistants
  • Speech and Language Therapists
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physiotherapists

Meet your presenter(s)

Joanna Courtney
Specialist Speech and Language Therapist

She has 18 years' experience of working in the field of Augmentative and Alternative Communication, spending her first 7 years working in a Special School. She has an Honours degree (BSc) in Speech and Language Pathology from Queen Margaret University and her particular area of interest is enabling peer interaction and group opportunities for people who use AAC.

About the event

  • Duration: 90 minutes, starting at 4:00pm
  • Capacity: Maximum of 20 per workshop.
  • Equipment requirements: Either a Windows PC (or laptop), Mac or tablet device with an internet connection and speakers. Microphone is optional.
  • Weblink for online workshop: This will be emailed to you a week before the event.
  • Preparing for the Webinar: To try and ensure the webinar goes as smoothly as possible for you on the day, we've created a very simple 4 point preparation list that you may wish to follow.


If you have technical problems and are not able to access the Online Learning on the day you will receive an archived recording of the session. No refunds will be given.


Course can be paid for by invoice or debit/credit card.

Card payment: You will recieve an email after your booking from which will contain a payment link.

Invoice: All Authorities are no 'NO PO, NO PAY' so please make arrangements to provide CALL Scotland with a Purchase Order Number from your local authority or school finance system. We will raise an invoice which will be sent directly to your Finance Office.

NB: We will be on the PECOS system as: The University of Edinburgh and NOT CALL Scotland (this is because we use the University's finance systems).