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Home > Vocabulary Selection > Context Dependent Communication

Vocabulary Selection for
Context-Dependent Communication

Once there is a reliable means of symbolic communication, it is time to provide more and more vocabulary to the individual so that he or she can

  • communicate with more people
  • about more topics

While you work with these individuals, you must keep in mind that your long-term goal is Independent Communication. You should be providing as much literacy training as possible to get there. But, if spelling is not going well or 3rd grade skills seem a distant goal, you must plan to provide enough vocabulary so that the individual will to be able to:

  • communicate with nearly everyone in his life
  • about almost anything

There are two overall approaches to the process of providing vocabulary to context-dependent communicators: 1) focusing on the individual and customizing the words, phrases and messages for his or her specific needs, or 2) acquiring a non-customized vocabulary designed for or used by other AAC users and teaching the individual to use it for his or her needs. You'll see that it is best to combine these approaches.

Strategies for CUSTOMIZING Vocabulary

Strategies for Using NON-CUSTOMIZED Vocabulary