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Phonemic Speech Output: A preliminary evaluation of the PhonicStick

  • Rolf Black
  • Annalu Waller
  • Graham Pullin
  • Eric Abel

A prototype device that allows direct access to spoken phonics via a joystick and that blends these phonics into spoken words has been designed and evaluated in a preliminary study. Seven children with different aetiologies took part, including children with complex communication needs (CCN) and children with learning disabilities.

All children were able to retrieve all six phonics in order to sound out words within a game scenario after one training session. Although two children experienced difficulties in accessing some of the phonics positions due to their physical disabilities, they were able to demonstrate that they knew the position of all six phonics.

One participant demonstrated how the PhonicStick could be used as an augmentative aid by intuitively using it to clarify her dysarthric speech when asked to identify a phonic.

Level of Session 
Age Group 
Topic of interest to people who use AAC
Primary school