AAC Conference

Nebraska Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Summer Conference

“Promoting Cultural and Linguistic Diversity in AAC”

June 11, 2021   |  Brochure   |  See Full Timed Agenda

First Course | 8:30 - 10:30 a.m.

Supporting Augmentative And Alternative Communication (AAC) Use Among Low-Resource Communities

Speaker Bio

Nimisha Muttiah, PhD, is a speech-language pathologist with 15 years of clinical and research experience. She is a senior lecturer in the University of Kelaniya Department of Disability Studies, Sri Lanka. Her primary research interests are children with significant communication difficulties who would require AAC methods to communicate. The focus of her research has been looking at individuals with complex communication needs living in low-and middle-income (LAMI) contexts and effective service delivery in such places.

Course Description

Implementation of AAC systems and methods within culturally and linguistically diverse contexts requires two main components: appropriate AAC systems and communication partners with the relevant training to support individuals with complex communication needs. In addition to being culturally and linguistically diverse, these communities may also have the added challenge of having limited financial resources. In these kinds of contexts, one option is to use less costly, lowtech (non-electronic) AAC systems. ommunication partners interacting with children with complex communication needs who are from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds need to be trained so they can better facilitate their children’s communication. This course will discuss two low-tech tools (low-tech visual scene displays and adapted books) and partner communication training that can be implemented in contexts that may have limited resources.


  • Participants demonstrated what a visual scene display (VSD) is and with which client populations it can be used.
  • Participants designed and demonstrated the use of a low-tech VSD.
  • Participants constructed and applied adapted books with children who have complex communication needs.
  • Participants identified the key principles when conducting trainings for communication partners who are from low-resource settings.

Second Course | 11 a.m. - 1:10 p.m.

Supporting Bilingual Communication In Children Who Communicate With AAC

Speaker Bio

Marika King, Ph.D., CCC-SLP is an assistant professor in the Department of Communicative Disorders and Deaf Education at Utah State University. She completed her master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at the University of New Mexico and her doctorate in Developmental Psychology at Georgia State University. Her research interests center on understanding and supporting the communication outcomes of bilingual children who use augmentative and alternative communication.

Course Description

This course describes culturally and linguistically responsive practices to support bilingual communication in children who use AAC. The course begins with an overview of research on bilingualism in children with complex communication needs and discusses fundamentals of additive bilingual environments to support home-language skills in emerging bilinguals. Findings from a recent survey of SLP’s perspectives, practices and confidence related to provision of AAC services for emergent bilinguals will be presented to highlight challenges and opportunities. Best practices in culturally and linguistically responsive AAC assessment and intervention will be presented illustrated by case studies.


  • Participants described key findings from research in bilingual language development in children with complex communication needs.
  • Participants discussed opportunities and challenges in supporting bilingual communication in children who communicate with AAC.
  • Participants explained best practices in culturally and linguistically responsive assessment and intervention for children who communicate with AAC.


Financial Disclosure: Dr. Nimisha Muttiah and Dr. Manika King are receiving a speaking fee from the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

Non-Financial Disclosure: Dr. Nimisha Muttiah and Dr. Manika King have no non-financial relationship to disclose.

CME/CE Credit

  • This course is offered for up to 0.4 ASHA CEUs (Intermediate level, Professional area)
  • ASHA CE Approved Provider | Nebraska Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Nebraska Speech-Language-Hearing Association ASHA CE Approved Provider logo

Location - Zoom (virtual presentation)

Registration Fee: $40