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Preschoolers with DS and AAC modeling (Quinn et al., 2019)

journal contribution
posted on 07.11.2019 by Emily D. Quinn, Ann P. Kaiser, Jennifer R. Ledford
Purpose: This study evaluated the effect of aided augmentative and alternative communication modeling (AAC-MOD) on the communication skills of children with Down syndrome (DS) during small group dialogic reading.
Method: Four children with DS between 3;1 and 5;3 (years;months; M = 4;5) and 5 typically developing peers between 3;5 and 5;9 (M = 4;3) participated. Effects were examined using a multiple probe across behaviors design with 4 children with DS. To simulate typical dialogic reading routines in inclusive classrooms, a strategy called Read, Ask, Answer, Prompt (Binger, Kent-Walsh, Ewing, & Taylor, 2010) was applied during the baseline and intervention sessions.
Results: A functional relation was demonstrated between (a) AAC-MOD and percentage of correctly identified symbols for 3 participants, (b) AAC-MOD and rate of symbolic communication for 2 participants, and (c) AAC-MOD and number of different words for 2 participants. Increases in number of multiple word combinations occurred for 2 participants. All 4 children maintained their percentage of correctly identified symbols. Increases in rate of symbolic communication did not generalize to thematic play contexts, a distal measure of response generalization.
Conclusion: AAC-MOD is an effective strategy for teaching target vocabulary and increasing rate of symbolic communication in young children with DS.

Supplemental Material S1. Procedural fidelity across all phases and participants.

Supplemental Material S2. Percentage of interobserver agreement across phases and dependent variables.

Supplemental Material S3. Graphing interobserver agreement to examine bias.

Supplemental Material S4. Nonoverlap and effect size estimates for percentage of correctly identified symbols.

Supplemental Material S5. Nonoverlap and effect size estimates for rate of symbolic communication.

Supplemental Material S6. Peer rate of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) use during baseline and intervention for all tiers.

Quinn, E. D., Kaiser, A. P., & Ledford, J. R. (2019). Teaching preschoolers with Down syndrome using augmentative and alternative communication modeling during small group dialogic reading. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1044/2019_AJSLP-19-0017


The contents of this article were supported in part by the Student Research Grant in Early Childhood Language Development from the American Speech-Language Hearing Foundation, the Special Education Endowment Award from Vanderbilt University, and the Doctoral Leadership Training Grant in Early Childhood Special Education (H325D10034A awarded to Ann P. Kaiser) from the U.S. Department of Education.