Designing interaction, voice, and inclusion in AAC research

Graham Pullin (Lead / Corresponding author), Jutta Treviranus, Rupal Patel, Jeff Higginbotham

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    29 Citations (Scopus)
    284 Downloads (Pure)


    The ISAAC 2016 Research Symposium included a Design Stream that examined timely issues across augmentative and alternative communication (AAC), framed in terms of designing interaction, designing voice, and designing inclusion. Each is a complex term with multiple meanings; together they represent challenging yet important frontiers of AAC research. The Design Stream was conceived by the four authors, researchers who have been exploring AAC and disability-related design throughout their careers, brought together by a shared conviction that designing for communication implies more than ensuring access to words and utterances. Each of these presenters came to AAC from a different background: interaction design, inclusive design, speech science, and social science. The resulting discussion among 24 symposium participants included controversies about the role of technology, tensions about independence and interdependence, and a provocation about taste. The paper concludes by proposing new directions for AAC research: (a) new interdisciplinary research could combine scientific and design research methods, as distant yet complementary as microanalysis and interaction design, (b) new research tools could seed accessible and engaging contextual research into voice within a social model of disability, and

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)139-148
    Number of pages10
    JournalAugmentative and Alternative Communication
    Issue number3
    Early online date4 Jul 2017
    Publication statusPublished - 2017


    • Talk-in-interaction
    • Interaction design
    • Speech-generating devices
    • Vocal identity
    • Inclusive design
    • Participatory design


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