Publication Date

Spring 5-7-2022

Document Type


First Advisor

Gladfelter, Allison

Second Advisor

Andzik, Natalie

Degree Name

B.S. (Bachelor of Science)


Department of Special and Early Education| School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders


Parents are known to be effective communication partners in their child’s augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) intervention. The aim of this interview study was to better understand the parent perspective in the AAC acquisition, implementation, and handing processes across a range of primary disability labels and ages. Participants engaged in phone interviews to discuss their family’s experiences with AAC obtainment and intervention. Qualitative review of their responses developed the following five themes: assessment procedures, external variables that influence device use, barriers of AAC navigation, supports parents have indicated have helped them, and major takeaways as identified by parents. Further subthemes were also created to better categorize parent responses. Findings support the inclusion of family-centered care for children with complex communication needs who use AAC. Parent responses indicate a greater need for interprofessional communication between members of a child’s team and their family to provide comprehensive support. Parents also emphasized a desire to introduce AAC earlier into their family’s life.