What is PECS and AAC and why do we use it?

AAC, or Augmentative and Alternative Communication, and PECS, which stands for Picture Exchange Communication System, are ways to help people who have trouble speaking communicate. AAC includes different methods, like using pictures or electronic devices, to help those who struggle with talking express themselves.

PECS is a specific type of AAC that uses pictures. It helps non-speaking people, especially those with autism or developmental disabilities, communicate by exchanging pictures for what they want or need. Some of the visual schedules created can also be used in mainstream settings or to keep children with ADHD on track inside and outside of the classroom.

PECS is helpful because it:

  1. Lets people communicate their needs and desires.
  2. Encourages independence by teaching people to initiate communication.
  3. Helps build language skills by using visual representations.
  4. Promotes social interaction and learning.
  5. Can be personalized to fit each person's needs.
  6. Is easy to understand and use, even in different settings.

Starting with PECS can be better than high-tech AAC devices in some cases because it's:

  1. Simple and easy to understand.
  2. Customizable to fit individual needs.
  3. Promotes social interaction and learning.
  4. Cost-effective and doesn't require special training or maintenance.