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Alternative & Augmentative Communication Aid (AAC Aids)

A Joint Venture of Manonandana and BNM Institute of Technology for the use of mentally challenged and differently abled children

AAC Aids are the communication methods used to supplement or replace speech in children and adults, who have impairment in speech product (Oral Language).These are AAC aids are mainly used for children with Cerebral Palsy, Autism, Cognitive impairment and specific language difficulty.

This AAC system emerged as a separate field.

Broadly, AAC has 2 systems of communication – aided and unaided. The unaided system includes use of body language, facial expression, sign language etc. These aided ones are – objects, picture, charts etc.

From the past 15 years many electronic equipment’s were assembled which resulted in faster rate of communication for the children. Asa result, AAC emerged as a specialized field by itself

About Electronic AAC Aids:

Various devices are planned according to the itellectrual ability, need, eye-hand co-ordination ability, fine motor co-ordination, user point of view.

It is found that these aids will facilitate the spoken language i.e. verbal expression

Helps to give more attention towards speech.

Quality of life improves, as the person can express better through the use of the language.

AAC Aids at Manonandana Centre

Manonandana Centre has given much importance to AAC for special children. The aids used were objects, picture card, picture charts etc. These things, even though very simple, facilitated the communication of a child who is severely disabled.

In the year 2003, low cost electronic aids were designed by Dr. Kusuma Bhatta (Speech Pathologist – Audiologist). The children enjoyed using these aids. Since then it has become a routine to use AAC for those who are in need at Manonandana Centre.

In order to make this AAC aid gadget user friendly, more practically inclined and make the specially abled children readily understand and effectively use them, Dr. Kusuma Bhatta approached BNM Institute of Technology for designing and manufacturing a system. The concept of Dr.Kusuma Bhatta was researched at BNM Institute of Technology to make them more advanced, contain more number of pictures and most importantly coordinate with the corresponding Audio input. After the project was researched, designed and manufactured by Sri Tejas C and Tejaswini V, students of Electronics & Communication Engineering under the guidance of Head of the Department, Dean, Principal, Director and encouragement by the Secretary, A Prototype was put together incorporating the necessities and special requirements of these children. Manonandana Centre thereafter gave a trial run for nearly two months. The children are very happy to use this instrument, which are having very attractive aids such as additional input, helping to mainstreaming of the special children and exposed to verbal language. All these are made possible by the involvement, interest & concern shown by the student’s staff and Management of BNMIT. Manonandana Centre thanks BNM Institute of Technology for making the specially-abled children’s life more meaningful and happy and such helping hand will lead to better quality of life for the afflicted children.

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