“If all my possessions were taken from me with one exception,
I would choose to keep the power of communication,
for by it I would soon regain all the rest.”

​-Daniel Webster


Kathy, could you write the intro text?

Janice Light (1989) defines communicative competence as “”. . . the ability to communicate functionally in the natural environment and to adequately meet daily communication needs.” For students who use AAC and are in inclusive settings, this goal is very appropriate . . . and challenging!


One of the most widely shared concepts in AAC is the notion of communicative competence. In this hallmark article, published over 20 years ago, Dr. Janice Light started the dialogue by suggesting that there are four domains to competence in AAC: linguistic competence, strategic competence, social competence, and operational competence. Dr. Musselwhite shared tips for each of these four domains:
(Definitions from Bridgeschool.org)

Linguistic Competence

Learning to monitor and exchange linguistic information for communication, participation and learning curricular content.

Systematic instruction is required to build the skills needed to understand and use language including the language “code” of various AAC systems. Students require instruction that supports them in learning how to use AAC to represent meaning and to combine words & phrases, often across modalities, to express more complex ideas for both spoken and written communication.

Resources:
3_ps_of_group_aac_activities
bookreading_displays_tip
light_tech_sets_to__support_literacy
sabotage_writeup
wheels_halloween
wheels_valentine
aac_mentors_tip
light_tech_displays
make_a_real_choice
prompting_hierarchy
tic_tac_talk
talk_of_the_town

Strategic Competence:

behavior

Learning to use AAC tools and devices strategically within the context of ongoing activities (e.g., at the correct time) to appropriately engage in curricular activities and conversations.

Students require instruction and practice in the use of additional strategies that allow them to use AAC tools flexibly in interactions. For example, learning to use different AAC tools for different purposes and with a range of communication partners.

Resources:
alphaboard_to__support_early_writing
eye_gaze_writeup


Social Competence:

Interactional use of AAC tools and devices.

It is important that students learn how to use AAC effectively during social interactions with others. This includes using AAC for a range of communicative purposes in conversations, and developing knowledge, judgment, and skills in the interpersonal aspects of communication.

Resources:
active_listening
conversation_parts
partscripts
story_scripts_tip
active_listening_reading
good_news_-_bad_news
selfconstructing_scripts


 


Operational Competence:

Learning how to operate/use AAC tools and devices.

​ Students require direct instruction to learn how to operate a range of AAC technologies. Operation of AAC systems includes both the production of body-based communication behaviors (e.g., gestures, facial expressions) and device-based modes of communication (e.g., operation of low tech communication boards through complex voice output devices).

Resources:
pointer_glove
stories_on_ceiling
spinner
etran
glad_pad_tip_writeup


 

Where can I learn more? ​

Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM) – Beginning Communicators
This module describes symbolic and non-symbolic forms of communication, the distinction between pre-intentional and pre-symbolic communicators, and identifies additional sources of support for building communication skills.
Online Self-directed Module
Facilitated Module Materials for Groups

DLM™ Core Vocabulary and Communication
This module focuses on the use of core vocabulary as a support for communication for students who cannot use speech to meet their face-to-face communication needs and require augmentative and alternative communication.
Online Self-directed Module
Facilitated Module Materials for Groups

Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM) – Speaking and Listening
This module addresses speaking and listening in the broader context of expressive and receptive communication for students with significant cognitive disabilities. The content in this module is important to understand the DLM Essential Elements in Speaking and Listening and across all of the strands of Essential Elements in English language arts.
Online Self-directed Module
Facilitated Module Materials for Groups

Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM) – Supporting Participating in Discussion
Participants will review the goals of supporting participation in discussion and the need of an expressive means of communication for all students. Participants will also be given 5 strategies to use in supporting students during discussions with teachers and peers.
Online Self-directed Module
Facilitated Module Materials for Groups

Dynamic Learning Maps (DLM) – Symbols
This self-directed module provides an overview of symbols to support communication and interaction. It also describes the use of symbols and photographs in text.
Online Self-directed Module
Facilitated Module Materials for Groups

The Language Stealers (video 2:52 min)
https://www.assistiveware.com/teaching-core-words-building-blocks-communication-and-curriculum

Aided Language Videos 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUY6oQoSTXw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=flFNMky22-U