I’m Elizabeth, a graduate student at Chapman University in Orange, CA. Part of the graduation requirement for Chapman is to submit and complete a Capstone Project. During my first year of graduate school, I brainstormed ideas but none really stuck that I was passionate about. Then this past summer I took CSD 507: Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) with Dr. Janet Dodd. I appreciated the great variability AAC devices have to offer: they can be high-tech or low-tech, used for kids or adults, and may be appropriate for a myriad of disorders from autism to aphasia. At the same time, my mom told me that my grandpa (who has aphasia) couldn’t communicate to the nurse at his assisted-living facility that he needed help with his medication. A light bulb went off and an idea was born.
This blog will document my efforts to train my grandpa how to use a communication book, a great low-tech AAC option for adults with aphasia. With Dr. Judy Montgomery as my adviser, I will post videos, pictures, journal entries and anything else that may be beneficial to other Communication Sciences & Disorders students and professionals reading this. My hope is that this blog will serve to show the positive impact a communication book can have on someone’s life because as the ASHA position statement on AAC reads, “communication is the essence of human life.”