Preprofessional Preparation in Augmentative and Alternative Communication: State-of-the-Art Report

Ann Ratcliff, David Beukelman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


A survey was developed to obtain information about the preprofessional preparation of speech-language pathologists in the area of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). Questions addressed areas of course work, practica, research, faculty and student demographics, preparation in AAC compared to other areas of speech-language pathology, and future departmental plans concerning AAC. The survey was sent to all training programs in speech-language pathology accredited by the Educational Standards Board of the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association in the United States. Fifty-eight percent of the institutions responded. The data indicate that 15% of the institutions offer more than one course devoted to AAC, 67% offer only one course devoted to AAC, 8% do not offer a separate AAC course but cover AAC information in other courses, and 11% do not teach in the area of AAC. Overall, a greater percentage of institutions are offering courses in AAC than in the past. Despite this increase in AAC courses, the data also indicate that (1) many faculty who teach AAC courses do not have AAC as an area of expertise, and (2) students do not appear to be obtaining an appreciable number of clinical clock hours in AAC, hands-on training with AAC technology, or exposure to the interdisciplinary nature of AAC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-73
Number of pages13
JournalAugmentative and Alternative Communication
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1995


  • augmentative and alternative communication (AAC)
  • course work
  • education
  • preprofessional preparation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Speech and Hearing

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