Supporting Aided Augmentative and Alternative Communication Interventions for Individuals With Complex Communication Needs via Telepractice: A Tutorial

Jessica J Simacek, Sanikan Wattanawongwan, Joe E Reichle, Jolene K Hyppa Martin, Lauren Pierson, Adele F Dimian


People who experience complex communication needs often benefit from interventions involving augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). However, barriers often prevent people from accessing high-quality AAC interventions. The COVID-19 pandemic likely further disrupted the onset or continuity of intervention. Furthermore, people with complex communication needs are typically at greater risk of experiencing health care disparities in general, particularly when people are culturally and linguistically diverse or reside in rural areas. Telepractice has supported the delivery of AAC interventions as an alternative model to replace or supplement in-person services during the pandemic. Considerations for how telepractice can continue to support intervention delivery to address barriers to access are discussed in this tutorial.

Telepractice has been necessary for many practitioners to provide AAC intervention continuity when in-person services have been unavailable during the pandemic. As this need resolves, telepractice is an important consideration for future innovation in AAC intervention delivery for greater access to supports and services.

Suggested Citation

Simacek, J., Wattanawongwan, S., Reichle, J., Hyppa-Martin, J., Pierson, L., & Dimian, A. (2021). Supporting aided augmentative and alternative communication interventions for individuals with complex communication needs via telepractice: A tutorial. Perspectives of the American Speech-Language-Hearing-Association.


Peer-Reviewed Article 
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association