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Self Study: Fostering Communication Competence in Augmentative and Alternative Communication Users, Educators and Caregivers

  • 01 Apr 2024
  • 30 Apr 2024
  • 12:00 PM
  • 24


  • Free for MSHA Members
  • Includes MSHA membership. Membership registration code sent following the webinar.

Registration is closed

Fostering Communication Competence in Augmentative and Alternative Communication Users, Educators and Caregivers

Available April 1-30

Members: FREE
Non-Members: $60

Event materials will be distributed via email April 1, 2024

Communication competence is the ability to express yourself functionally across all environments (Light & Binger, 1998). Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) users often learn to use their AAC communication system in one environment only to have difficulties carrying that learning into other environments. One factor that contributes to this difficulty is a lack of knowledge of, and therefore, confidence to use the AAC system. The assistive technology team has focused its efforts on increasing communication competence in both the school and home environments for all our students using AAC. This presentation will focus on the process developed by the Assistive Technology Team for Boston Public Schools to determine how to increase the competence and confidence of our related service providers working with AAC users. Identifying practical tips and techniques, it will also discuss how to continue the development of training for teachers, specialists, support staff and caregivers to increase their understanding and comfort with low, mid, and high tech AAC devices.

Aubrey Rubin, SLP

Learner Outcomes
The participants will be able to:
1. Explain the SETT Framework and feature matching and how these are used to guide Assistive Technology decision making in the Boston Public Schools
2. Describe the barriers encountered when attempting to increase consistency of AAC implementation across a large urban school district and how some of these barriers can be overcome with professional development, training, and material development
3. Provide practical AAC teaching and implementation strategies for students, related service providers, teachers, support staff and caregivers

Time-Ordered Agenda
5 minutes - Introduction
25 minutes - Background Information:

  • What is Assistive Technology
  • DESE and Assistive Technology
  • History of Assistive Technology in BPS

20 minutes - The Assistive Technology Process in BPS
50 minutes - How Do We Support:

  • Related Service Providers
  • Teachers
  • Caregivers

10 minutes - Where are we Going from Here
10 minutes - Questions

About the Presenter

Aubrey Rubin, SLP is a speech and language  pathologist employed by Boston Public Schools since 2005. Focused on students with complex communication needs, Ms. Rubin has worked in a variety of schools within the Boston system that includes students ages three to twenty-two in both substantially separate as well as inclusion settings. Ms. Rubin also served as the coordinator of the Assistive Technology Team for Boston Public Schools. As coordinator, Ms. Rubin collaborated with a team of speech and language pathologists, occupational therapists, and a teacher of the visually impaired to assure that students with disabilities could access the general education curriculum. Currently, Ms. Rubin is a Supervisor for the Related Services Department in Complex Needs and Assistive Technology at Boston Public Schools. In this role, she continues to coordinate the assistive technology team as well as supervise and mentor related service providers that also work with students with complex needs. Ms. Rubin provides a variety of professional development trainings for related service providers and teachers within Boston Public Schools. In recognition of the value of her work Ms. Rubin has presented at national conferences about the Boston Public Schools assistive technology program. Ms. Rubin obtained her master’s degree from the MGH Institute of Health Professions where she is currently a doctoral student.

Disclosure Statements

Aubrey Rubin, SLP
Financial: Aubrey is receiving an honorarium for this presentation and receives a salary from Boston Public Schools.

Non-financial: Aubrey is a member of ASHA.

This program is approved for ASHA CEUs.

Interested in sponsoring this event? Please consider partnering with us for this worthwhile experience. If you have any questions, contact our office at 781-647-7031 or by email at

Vision Statement

The Massachusetts Speech-Language-Hearing Association will be recognized as an authority and resource in the fields of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology by legislative bodies, related professional associations and consumers.

© Massachusetts Speech-Language Hearing Association

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