I-ASC- Identifying Appropriate Symbol Communication aids for children who are non-speaking: enhancing clinical decision making

I-ASC – Identifying appropriate symbol communication aids for children who are non-speaking: enhancing clinical decision making

Some children with conditions such as cerebral palsy, dyspraxia or severe autism, struggle to develop intelligible speech. High-tech augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) can enable such children to supplement their communication by accessing pictures, symbols and/or text, often accompanied by voice output. The choice of which AAC device to prescribe can have long lasting consequences for children and their development but little is known about the decision making of clinicians in this context.

We aim to study the priorities of clinicians and the trade-offs they make by conducting two stated preference surveys. The first is a best-worst scaling study which will identify the most important factors relating both to children and to AAC devices. The results of this study will then feed into a discrete choice experiment which will examine in more detail the trade-offs clinicians make and the interactions between child and device related factors.

These experiments and other qualitative findings will inform the development of a clinical decision making heuristic.

CMC members involved: David Meads