Communication Matters set up the Research Involvement Network in September 2011. It is a list of people who are interested in taking part in research. The aim is to support and encourage research into in the UK. We are currently recruiting members in the UK.

Research is a process of gathering information and analysing it to increase our understanding of a topic or problem. Research can establish facts, solve problems or develop new theories. Findings from research into AAC could help the Government, the NHS and local authorities to understand better what services are needed. Research evidence can help practitioners to improve services and support for AAC users to communicate. You can help to ensure that our research will be directly relevant to the people who can benefit from it most, by sharing your knowledge and experience.

We believe it is important that more AAC users get involved, as it makes research more relevant and more likely to be used. We are particularly keen to recruit more AAC users, their family members and carers. The first AAC user to become a member of the Research Involvement Network was Simon Stevens, independent disability consultant, trainer and activist (pictured right).

Who can join the Network?

AAC users of all ages

Family members and carers of AAC users

Practitioners in the fields of health, education and social care


If you join the Network we will send you information about opportunities to be involved in AAC research projects that may be relevant to you. You can decide whether or not you wish to participate. You can help research projects in many ways, for example completing a questionnaire, being interviewed about your experiences, or providing advice to researchers. When you join the network, you give your consent for us to pass your contact details onto researchers; however, you do not have to take part in what you are offered. We will never pass your details to any third parties outside our research network without your permission.

Benefits of joining the Network

  • Help other AAC users

  • Receive information about current AAC research projects

  • Learn about what is involved in research

  • Learn new skills

  • Feel valued for sharing your knowledge and experience of AAC

  • Take opportunities to shape the development of research

How can I join?

To join, simply download the enrolment form. If you download the Word version, you can complete it, save it and email it to [email protected]. If you download the PDF version, you will need to print it to complete it. You can email us to send you a stamped reply envelope so you can post it back to us at no cost.

Information for Researchers

Please Note

The Research Involvement Network is currently being revised. We can still help you to find participants in the meantime by including a notice in our weekly e-newsletter. Please email [email protected] with a title and up to 200 words about your project for our newsletter. Please also include a contact email and/or link so readers can find out further information and contact you directly.

Would you like help in finding participants for research into AAC? Please download and read our guidelines for researchers. The guidelines include an application form. Before completing it please contact us for an initial discussion: email [email protected]

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