How do I write AAC goals into my child's IEP?

Parent Question
Oct. 27, 2022

A typical phrase you can use in an IEP goal is “When provided unrestricted access to AAC, the student will—” for example, answer questions in response to a reading passage. SLP Rachel Madel likes the phrase “unrestricted access to AAC” because there’s the concern that a teacher might take away a device if they perceive that the student is distracted. A child should always have their communication device in front of them. This means IEP teams may also want to think about “backup” communication. For example, if a child’s device runs out of battery, or substitute staff have not yet been trained on how to use it, could other low-tech visual supports be available? These can be written into the IEP as accommodations.

Undivided Education Advocate Lisa Carey recommends the phrase “using multimodal communication” in IEP goals so that whether a child is using AAC, sign language, gestures, word approximations, or any other form of communication, they can be working on their goals.

In addition to writing IEP goals that involve using AAC to communicate questions and answers, consider writing goals about using the AAC system itself. Does the student know how to adjust the volume as appropriate or plug in the device when it needs to be charged? Those skills can also be written as IEP goals.

See this article for plenty of sample IEP goals that incorporate the use of AAC into both academic and social goals with peers.

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