Symbols or Text, Wordbanks or Worksheets: Supporting students who use AAC to access the curriculum



Practice Report

    • Marion Stanton (CandLE Limited)


This session is for teachers, teaching assistants, families, therapists and anyone who is involved in supporting students who use AAC to access the curriculum. The aim it to share practice which enables students to maximise their academic potential, both in terms of access to the curriculum and the literacy acquisition that they need in order to do so.


Based on the success stories of a small cohort of individual students, including students who are tackling GCSEs and others who are learning the rudements of basic literacy, this session will look at approaches which help and those which may hinder progress.


Current research and the experience of the presenter is that students who use AAC benefit from targetted literacy programmes which go beyond the current, mainstream approaches but at the same time embrace them. There is a lack of research in regard to the best ways in which the curriculum can be adapted for AAC users but the presenter will share success stories from personal experience on approaches that have worked.


There is a need for more targetted research around literacy development and curriculum access but anecdotal evidence suggests that there are some commonsense approaches that can, and should be, implemented to maximise the learning potential of students who use AAC.

Level of Session


Age Group



Primary school
Secondary school
Special school
Further/Higher Ed.

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