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Augment Altern Commun. 2015;31(4):271-84. doi: 10.3109/07434618.2015.1052153. Epub 2015 Jun 10.

Effects of Communication Partner Instruction on the Communication of Individuals using AAC: A Meta-Analysis.

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a Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders , University of Central Florida , Orlando , FL.
b Department of Audiology and Speech Language Sciences , University of Northern Colorado , Greeley , CO.
c Florida Speech-Language Pathology, Inc. , Orlando , FL.
d Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences , University of New Mexico , Albuquerque , NM , USA.


The purpose of this study was to conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis of the augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) partner instruction intervention literature to determine (a) the overall effects of partner interventions on the communication of individuals using AAC, and (b) any possible moderating variables relating to participant, intervention, or outcome characteristics. Seventeen single-case experimental design studies (53 participants) met the inclusion criteria and were advanced to the full coding and analysis phase of the investigation. Descriptive analyses and effect size estimations using the Improvement Rate Difference (IRD) metric were conducted. Overall, communication partner interventions were found to be highly effective across a range of participants using AAC, intervention approaches, and outcome measure characteristics, with more evidence available for participants less than 12 years of age, most of whom had a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder or intellectual/developmental disability. Aided AAC modeling, expectant delay, and open-ended question asking were the most frequently targeted communication partner interaction skills. Providing a descriptive overview, instructor modeling, guided practice, and role plays were the most frequently incorporated communication partner intervention activities within the included studies.


Complex communication needs; Intervention; Meta-analysis; Systematic review

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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