Sign Language Symbols, Videos & GIFs in AAC Apps

Did you know that several AAC apps have a way to add sign language symbols and some have a way to play an ASL video or GIF? It’s cool to have these options to meet very unique needs.

As with anything that I share… there is no “one size fits all” to AAC. Some individuals may prefer just to sign and might use text messaging or hand writing when communicating with those who don’t know sign language. For those who want to use AAC, some users may prefer the regular symbols in that AAC system, some may prefer text-based AAC, some may prefer that ASL letter symbols be added to a keyboard, some may prefer GIFs or videos of signs, some may prefer static pics of signs, some may prefer a combination of options, etc…

So it is very important to include that individual in deciding what may be helpful for them.

This post is purely just to share info about options. I’m in the unique position of having access not just to almost every AAC app but also various extra symbol sets within them. I feel compelled to share info about what I’m able to find in these apps since that often isn’t fully documented in the description in the App Store or on the various companies’ websites.

Note: Most apps allow you to import pics from your Camera Roll. I often take a screenshot of a symbol that I may need and use it in another app. Most AAC apps also offer a way for folks to share things that they have customized directly with another person via AirDrop, email, DropBox, Google Drive, etc…

My focus in this post is on AAC apps that offer sign language symbols as part of their built in (or an add on) symbol library or offer a way to play ASL videos or GIFs and/or offer a way to download premade boards from a website or public online sharing area. This post is primarily about iOS apps but a few are available on other platforms (Android and/or Windows)

AAC apps are constantly changing as new features are added. The info was accurate at the time of this post. I may occasionally update it in the future.


Avaz AAC

I did not notice any sign language symbols when editing in the iOS or Android versions of this app. This seemed odd since I know that other apps that use SymbolStix have some. But the way that you have to tap to see individual symbols vs. being able to scroll through a large list made it more time consuming to look. So it’s possible that I just didn’t find them. The keyboard buttons are not editable and this app doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device.


Clicker Communicator

SymbolStix sign language symbols in the SymbolStix version of Clicker Communicator
PCS Sign Language symbols in the PCS version of Clicker Communicator

Sign language symbols are available when editing but neither seemed to be as complete of a library as I had seen in other apps that use these symbol sets. I did not find anything in their Learning Grids sharing area related to ASL or sign language. The keyboard buttons are not editable and this app doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device.


CoughDrop AAC

GIPHY ASL sign GIFs in CoughDrop

CoughDrop can be used on almost any device on almost any platform. It has a unique built in option to include GIPHY ASL sign GIFs when searching for symbols while editing. You can search out in their Find a Board area to see examples of how other folks have used this: https://app.mycoughdrop.com/search/any/ASL. I found it visually overstimulating to have several ASL GIF videos playing simultaneously on a page so please keep that in mind when considering this option.

LessonPix ASL symbols can be made available in CoughDrop by linking your account
LessonPix ASL symbols

You can link your LessonPix account to be able to use their ASL symbols within this app: https://lessonpix.com/clipart/355/ASL

SymbolStix sign language symbols in CoughDrop
The keyboard in CoughDrop is editable. I didn’t find a premade keyboard with ASL symbols but I was able to create one and then link it to be used in my board set. I’m still working on the “numbers” page. This took some time to create and some trial and error to figure out so it’s likely best suited for those who are familiar with the CoughDrop interface.

For those who purchase the SymbolStix add-on that allows SymbolStix sign language symbols to be available when editing. What’s interesting is the PCS symbol add-on did not appear to include PCS Sign Language symbols. I searched for several but didn’t find them. It’s possible that I might have overlooked them. The keyboard page is editable. This app doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device.


GoTalk Now Plus

SymbolStix sign language symbols in GoTalk Now Plus

GoTalk Now Plus includes the SymbolStix symbol library. When editing this includes access to the SymbolStix sign language symbols. This app offers several different PCS symbol add-ons but PCS Sign Language symbols isn’t one of the options. They also offer a METACOM symbols add-on but I don’t have that so I don’t know whether or not that includes the METACOM sign language symbols.

GoTalk Now allows multiple images on a button. That allows use of a sign language symbol to be paired with a photo or other symbol.

GoTalk Now Plus is unique in allowing you to have several symbols and/or photos on one button. You can program the button to play a video stored on that iPad. This would allow you to link buttons to sign language video clips. Sign language GIFs could be use if those were converted into videos. This iPad-only app uses the iOS device keyboard. Unfortunately I haven’t found an iOS alternative keyboard that is still available that offers the ASL alphabet symbols on the keys.


Grid for iPad / Grid 3

SymbolStix sign language symbols in Grid for iPad (would also be available in Grid 3 on Windows devices)

The SymbolStix library includes the SymbolStix sign language symbols when editing. This app also has PCS symbols but that didn’t appear to include the PCS Sign Language symbols.

ASL Letter Explorer & Text Writer grid set available for download from the Smartbox Online Grids sharing area. This pic shows is with text only word prediction.
ASL Letter Explorer & Text Writer grid set available for download from the Smartbox Online Grids sharing area. This pic shows is with symbol supported word prediction. I edited to change the font & font size to allow the symbols to be large enough to be recognizable.

I searched the Online Grids sharing area and found an ASL Letter Explorer & Text Writer grid set available for download: https://grids.thinksmartbox.com/en/tt-9/98e8ea32-146c-4554-b482-3988248bf294. It is in QWERTY layout and includes word prediction. I adjusted the settings to just have text show up on the word prediction. If you want to have symbol supported word prediction you will need to adjust the font size and type of symbols to allow the symbols to be large enough to be recognizable.

Grid 3 on a Windows device supports use of a button command to play a video saved on that device and there is a Music and Videos grid set available for download from Online Grids. But I haven’t figured out whether or not it’s possible to program a button in one of the symbol-based AAC grid sets to pop up to play a video and then snap back to that page (vs. having it navigate to the separate Music and Videos grid set). The ability to do that would be helpful for being able to link an ASL sign language video to a specific button in an AAC grid set (like I was able to do in GoTalk Now, TouchChat with WordPower & Niki Talk 2 Pro). I’ll update this section if I figure out a way to do this. Unfortunately playing a video isn’t available as an option on Grid for iPad.


LAMP Words for Life

This iPad-only app has its own multi-meaning symbols that are an integral part of the design. It doesn’t include sign language symbols and doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device. LAMP Words for Life is also available on the company’s SGDs. It is been quite awhile since I’ve used one of those so I’m not sure if it would offer any features related to this.


Niki Talk 2 Pro

This app uses ARASAAC symbols & Les Pictogrammes symbols. I didn’t see sign language symbols in either within the app. But the app does offer the option to program a button to play a video from the iPad Camera Roll. This would allow you to link a button to play an ASL video. This iPad-only app uses the iOS device keyboard. Unfortunately I haven’t found an iOS alternative keyboard that is still available that offers the ASL alphabet symbols on the keys.


Proloquo

Although this iOS Universal app uses SymbolStix I didn’t find SymbolStix sign language symbols when editing. It doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device.


Proloquo2Go

SymbolStix sign language symbols in Proloquo2Go

The SymbolStix library includes the SymbolStix sign language symbols when editing. The keyboard area is not editable. This iOS Universal app can also use the iOS device keyboard but I haven’t found an iOS alternative keyboard that is still available that offers the ASL alphabet symbols on the keys. It doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device.


simPODD

Although this iPad-only app uses SymbolStix I didn’t find SymbolStix sign language symbols when editing. It doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device.


Speak for Yourself

This app uses Smarty Symbols. I didn’t see any sign language symbols included in that library. It doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device. This iOS Universal app uses the iOS device keyboard. Unfortunately I haven’t found an iOS alternative keyboard that is still available that offers the ASL alphabet symbols on the keys.


Talk Suite Pro

This app uses their own unique Persona symbols. I didn’t see any sign language symbols included in that library. It doesn’t offer a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device. The app’s keyboard can’t be edited to add ASL symbols. This iPad-only app also uses the iOS device keyboard. Unfortunately I haven’t found an iOS alternative keyboard that is still available that offers the ASL alphabet symbols on the keys.


TD Snap AAC

Sign language symbols in TD Snap

This app is available for the iPad and Windows devices. When editing you can have access to the PCS Sign Language symbol library. These appear to be a mix of American Sign Language and Signed Exact English symbols. You’ll need to make sure you have downloaded it and you can drag it to the top of the symbols list if you want to prioritize those symbols coming up first in a search. They also offer METACOM symbols as an add-on via in-app purchase. That includes sign language symbols. I wasn’t able to find details about these but METACOM symbols were designed in and are primarily used in Germany so these might be German Sign Language.

I checked all of the various pagesets including the add-ones for PODD and Gateway. The PCS Sign Language symbols and METACOM symbols (if purchased) were available when editing regardless of the pageset.

Neither version of TD Snap offers a way to link a button to play an ASL video saved on that device.

METACOM & PCS Sign Language symbols are available in TD Snap

When I searched on Pageset Central these two things came up that folks created with sign language symbols and shared:

Eli’s ASL Pageset that can be downloaded from Pageset Central for use in TD Snap
Eli’s ASL Pageset has an Alphabet and Numbers page with ASL symbols on the buttons

It includes an Alphabet and Numbers page with ASL symbols on the buttons. The Keyboard is a regular QWERTY keyboard.

Eli’s ASL Pageset: http://bit.ly/40cUvRW

Core Words ASL pageset that can be downloaded from Pageset Central for use in TD Snap

Core Words ASL (just a page… not a full Pageset. So I imported it and added it within Eli’s ASL Pageset): http://bit.ly/3RjXmo1


TouchChat with WordPower

TouchChat with WordPower – Spelling Sign Language pageset
TouchChat with WordPower – American Sign Language SymbolStix symbols
TouchChat with WordPower – Australian Sign Language SymbolStix symbols

When editing this iOS Universal app you’ll have access to two different sign language SymbolStix symbol libraries: American Sign Language & Australian Sign Language.

They have a “Spelling Sign Language” page set available for free download from their website: https://touchchatapp.com/non-standard-vocabs#SpellingSignLanguage

TouchChat with WordPower also offers the option to link a button to play a video stored on that device. This video shows that being used to play an ASL sign language video. For multiple meaning words with different signs depending on the context you could link to a page that provides a button for each.

The same pageset options may be available in the company’s line of SGDs but it has been awhile since I’ve used those so I don’t know how the features may vary on those.


Twinkl Symbols for AAC

Twinkl Symbols for AAC app includes British Sign Language symbols

Twinkl Symbols for AAC is an iOS Universal app that includes British Sign Language symbols (BSL). The Type 2 Talk keyboard area in this app uses the iOS device keyboard. Unfortunately I haven’t found an iOS alternative keyboard that is still available that offers the ASL alphabet symbols on the keys.


Other Options

ALICE with ASL & Text

ALICE with ASL & Text app

Pre-recorded content is available in spoken English with ASL or English subtitles allowing users to choose the communication mode they feel most comfortable with. It’s easy for users to find their desired messages quickly with the organized and categorized library of content and search function. The app includes over 30 common general and medical phrases with interactive responses – over 130 unique videos are included in this app. Users choose a phrase they want to communicate and play the video for the other person. Depending on the video content, either person can choose a response. Some additional communication may be prompted via other means – paper/pen, speaking or gesturing. More info: https://access.llc/alice-app/. ALICE with ASL & Text, https://apps.apple.com/app/id1467049575 (iOS Universal)

I did a screen recording of the introduction within the app since I couldn’t find any videos of it online:


MyChoicePad2

MyChoicePad2 app with Makaton sign language symbols

I don’t have a subscription for the MyChoicePad2 app since Makaton symbols aren’t really used here in the USA. But I wanted to include this in this post for those in the UK and other countries where it is used. It appears to be for very basic choice making. See their website for info: https://www.mychoicepad.com/read-our-stories/mychoicepad2-a-new-fresh-app-for-2021-10-year-anniversary/. Info about Makaton: https://makaton.org/TMC/About_Makaton/TMC/AboutMakaton.aspx?


Sign2TXT

Sadly the Sign2TXT app is no longer available

Unfortunately the unique Sign2TXT AAC app with sign language symbols by Angie Craft (https://appsto.re/us/NJMz0.i) disappeared from the App Store a few years ago (even gone from the Purchased area). See the website for more info: http://www.handcraftedasl.com/sign2txt/. You can also see it archived on AppAdvice: https://appadvice.com/app/sign2txt/879126759. I had a couple of Deaf students/patients/clients who did really well with that app. The ability to search for signs by hand shape was very unique. I’m including it in this post in the hopes that the app eventually returns or that this might inspire another app developer to create something or existing app developers to add similar capabilities to their AAC apps.


On Social Media

TheSigningSLP is a great account to follow on Instagram: https://instagram.com/thesigningslp


Related Resources


Contact Info

Have a question, found a broken link or know of another AAC option that includes sign language symbols or can support use of ASL videos or GIFs? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

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TD Snap: Phonics Keyboards for the Motor Plan 66 pageset (free to download from MyTobiiDynavox Pageset Central)

This video shows two phonics sounds keyboards that I added to my Motor Plan 66 pageset in the TD Snap AAC app:

As you’ll see in my video, the Motor Plan 66 pageset already includes a regular QWERTY style keyboard where you can hear letter names as you type. Toggle that on under Edit – User – Preferences – Speak Characters. If you don’t want letters spoken as you type that’s where you can toggle that off.


Note: I am well aware that some folks have a very rigid “anti-phonics keyboard” stance. If this is you then don’t add this to your pageset and scroll on by. I am well aware that there are lots of other strategies needed to teach literacy skills to individuals with complex communication needs. If you need more info about that I suggest reading “Comprehensive Literacy for All” and joining the “Comprehensive Literacy for All BookStudy” group on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cl4all. I am sharing these Phonics keyboards as a tool since I personally had LOTS of students/patients/clients who had a high interest in letters, letter names, letter sounds, playing with rhyming, etc. Many of them were likely hyperlexic. I also had several who were Autistic and had a passion for anything letter related. Some were likely Gestalt Language Processors and seemed to really enjoy the playing with letter sounds related to their gestalts/scripts. Having this type of keyboard in an app resonated with them and sparked interest in using their AAC system. Providing this type of option also gave school staff something that helped them include these students in phonics activities and sparked them becoming more comfortable using an AAC app. A win-win in my book. So now that the “why” is made clear onto the “how”…


I’m on my iPad in the video but also have this synced with this app on my Windows tablet. I show how to find these on Pageset Central, where I linked mine in the TD Snap Motor Plan 66 Dashboard area, how to import a page to link it to a button, etc… I used Emily Miller’s Jolly Phonics Keyboard (https://www.mytobiidynavox.com/psc/snapcorefirst/139396) as a starting point, edited to add more and did additional voice recordings.

I uploaded a text only version & a version that includes the Jolly Phonics pictures (but could easily be edited to use pictures associated with whatever phonics program your school uses).

These are both FREE downloads via Pageset Central on MyTobiiDynavox:

text only version (can easily edit to change the button colors, font color, font size & style of font)

Text only version of the TD Snap Motor Plan 66 phonics keyboard : https://www.mytobiidynavox.com/psc/snapcorefirst/296366


version with Jolly Phonics pictures (can easily edit to change the pictures)

Version with Jolly Phonics pictures: https://www.mytobiidynavox.com/psc/snapcorefirst/296365 (note: I show in the video how you can delete those pictures and add you own pics to correspond with whatever phonics program is being used. Some kids liked having phonics pictures. Some didn’t. Choose the option that resonates with them)


How to find and add the new USA Motor Plan Pagesets in TD Snap. These are a new option in addition to the other pagesets (not replacing anything). These are included with TD Snap (no additional cost). Make sure you have updated TD Snap to version 1.25. These are currently available for USA English & UK English. They indicated that they are working on prioritizing development for other languages and a Spanish/English bilingual version but no specific details are known yet on the timeframes.


TD Snap AAC app (iOS version is iPad-only): https://apps.apple.com/us/app/td-snap-aac/id1257753762

TD Snap AAC app (Windows version): purchase directly from Tobii Dynavox: https://www.mytobiidynavox.com/Store/Snap). Also available on their line of SGDs: https://us.tobiidynavox.com/collections/devices/+td-snap?sort_by=manual (filter search further by access method to find what you might need).

More info about the TD Snap Motor Plan pagesets: https://us.tobiidynavox.com/pages/td-snap-motor-plan.

TD Snap Motor Plan Page Set Training Cards: https://bit.ly/TDsnapMotorPlan-TrainingCards

Want in-depth info about how these pagesets are designed and the research behind them? Read the whitepaper: https://bit.ly/TDsnapMotorPlanWhitePaper

Tobii Dynavox has been offering free live webinars specifically about this new pageset option. See their website for more info: https://us.tobiidynavox.com/blogs/live-training. During the one that I attended on Friday (1/27/23) they mentioned that the recording of it would be uploaded to their Learning Hub. I’ll add the link here when it’s available: <link to be added>


My TD Snap related resources:


Have a question? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

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• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

New Resource: App and Card Game Companion + AAC Communication Board: Guess Who?

New Resource: App and Card Game Companion + AAC Communication Board: Guess Who?, https://bit.ly/GuessWhoAppAndCardGameCompanion

For use with the Guess Who? Meet the Crew app: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/guess-who/id1624777523 (iOS Universal, iOS 11.0 or later. $2.99, prices vary outside of USA based on exchange rate). There isn’t an Android version of this app yet.

And the Guess Who? Card Game: https://a.co/d/90F0G6A


TPT Preview Video:

Video about the Guess Who? Meet the Crew app:

Here’s the review that I left on the App Store:


Update: I decided to purchase the in-app purchase for the Transformers themed card deck. It is more challenging but would be fun for kids who have a high interest in Transformers.


Have questions? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

Updated Feature Matching Chart for the Top 13 iOS Text-Based AAC Apps (11/22/22)

This resource has been updated. The PAROL+ app was removed since it has totally disappeared from the App Store. The HandySpeech app was added in its place. I get pretty frequent requests for info about handwriting-to-text-to-speech AAC so it made sense to add this app. The SayIt! Easy AAC app changed to a “freenium” pricing model. So if you already had this app be sure to tap “Restore Purchases” to get full access without having to pay a subscription or be charged for the much higher app price.

Those who have previously purchased it on TPT can download the most current version for no additional cost: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Feature-Matching-Chart-for-the-Top-13-iOS-Text-Based-AAC-Apps-7740844

Ko-fi recurring monthly subscribers can find the download link on today’s post: https://ko-fi.com/post/Updated-Text-Based-AAC-Feature-Matching-Chart-11-V7V8GJZM9 or on the pinned post: https://ko-fi.com/Post/Links-to-posts-about-most-current-feature-matching-F1F5C9DMD


More info about this and other resources to compare features in AAC apps can be found on this post: https://bit.ly/5aacFeatureMatchingResources


Have a question? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

AAC Apps and Features At-a-Glance (Single Page Handouts)

New Resource: AAC Apps and Features At-a-Glance (Single Page Handouts). https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/AAC-Apps-and-Features-At-a-Glance-Single-Page-Handouts-8799502

TPT preview video:


This 90 page PDF resource was inspired by the numerous requests that I’ve received for simple “at a glance” info about features in AAC apps and single page handouts that could be used with parents, caregivers and anyone involved in the AAC decision making process.


Table of Contents:

A Preview Sample PDF is available for this resource on TPT. It includes the Table of Contents and a few sample pages.


This resource includes:

• A hyperlinked Table of Contents to jump straight to a page. Tap in the top left corner to jump back to the Table of Contents (when being used digitally)

• 11 Features At-a-Glance Handouts

• 36 AAC App Summary At-a-Glance Handouts (see Table of Contents for a list)

• 12 Gestalt Language Processing & AAC Handouts

• 4 Just-a-List Lists of Free AAC apps Handouts

• 2 unlisted videos (5 min demo of how to view 2 pages side-by-side using Split View & a 20 min Resource Overview)

• Links to additional resources

• How to contact me with questions (includes my email address exclusive to TPT)


These will be helpful on either side of an AAC evaluation that involves feature matching and trials of a few options:

Beforehand to help simplify the process of knowing which apps and/or features you might want to consider during an AAC eval

Afterwards to place at-a-glance sheets side by side as a reminder of apps that were included in the trials and help simplify the process of deciding which ones warrant a longer term trial or which one might be selected for submission in a funding request.

• These can also be helpful during the feature matching process to help provide simple explanations about some of the features and why they might be important.


It would be impossible to include all of the features in a particular AAC app on a single page handout. These are just “highlights”. These handouts should be used alongside (not instead of) in-depth up to date feature matching resources.


This resource is optimized for both printed and digital use:

Printed:

• Print a single page first to see if you need to choose “shrink to fit” on your printer. Print pages and place them side-by-side to compare features or apps.

• In order to keep the aesthetic of single page handouts the pages are not numbered. If you want to add page numbers, either write them or use a PDF editing app to add them.

Digital:

• The Table of Contents has hyperlinks to tap a page number to jump straight to that page. Tap the top left corner on any page to return to the Table of Contents.

• There a few other underlined hyperlinks in this resource to take you straight to additional information. I purposefully did not include App Store links since those can vary by country and aren’t always redirected.

• There are several options to view two pages side-by-side to compare features or apps:

• Use two iPads or tablets or open on two windows on a laptop.

• On iPadOS 13.0 or later, save the PDF in two different PDF viewer apps and use Split View to view them. The demo video included in the resource shows how.

• The PDF Expert and GoodNotes 5 apps offer a way to view two documents side-by-side within that one app


Looking for in-depth info about features AAC apps? Check out these resources:

• iOS Symbol-Based: https://bit.ly/SymbolBasedAACapps

• iOS Text-Based: https://bit.ly/TextBasedAACapps

• Visual Scenes & Video Visual Scenes: https://bit.ly/AACvsd

• AAC Feature Matching Resource Bundle (includes all three, save 10%): https://bit.ly/aacFeatureMatchingBundle. If you are looking to purchase resources for several staff / team members, take a look at the Multiple Licenses discount (saves 20%)

• Robust Android AAC Apps (Google Play & Amazon Fire): https://bit.ly/RobustAndroidAACappChart

• Affordable and Free AAC apps & AAC-Related Apps (iOS, Android, Amazon Fire, Windows & a few web-based options): https://bit.ly/BasicAffordableAACchart


Have questions? The best way to reach me with any questions is via messaging on the OMazing Kids Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/. That way AAC related messages don’t get lost among the spam in my e-mail.


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

Visual Tools for Prioritizing AAC Features

Visual Tools for Prioritizing AAC Features. Available on my TPT Store: https://bit.ly/VisualToolsAAC

This 42 page PDF includes visuals and worksheets to be used as tools when prioritizing the features needed most in an AAC app for that individual.

TPT Preview video:


AAC app features are prioritized using the following scale:

• Critical: Features that an AAC app MUST have in order to be of any use for this individual

• Important: Features that an AAC app needs to have in order for it to be of much use for this individual

• Nice to Have: Features that would be beneficial but not essential for that individual

• Optional: Features that wouldn’t necessarily benefit the individual right now

• Not Needed: Features that are not needed for this individual now or in the foreseeable future

The following visual tools and worksheets are included:

• Relevant Info About the AAC User worksheet

• Priority Levels handout

• 25 Priority Tokens (a page with 25 token, 5 for each priority level)

• 5 Priority Brainstorming worksheets (5 pages, 1 for each priority level)

• 42 Feature Comparison Cards (40 features + 2 blank cards, 2 per page. Includes cards for several features that might be uniquely helpful for Gestalt Language Processors)

• Ideas for Use handout (including suggestions to facilitate participation of the AAC user in the decision making process)

Bonus Content: An alternative version with 4 pages per sheet is included as Bonus Content in this resource for those who want an easy way to print smaller cards.


Ideas for Use:

• Print, cut out & laminate to create a reusable tool. Write on it with a fine tip dry erase marker. The priority token can just be laid on a card or you could use Velcro.

• Print in black/white or grayscale, cut out and use as worksheets to write on. Use a glue stick to attach the priority token to each card.

• The last two cards are blank to use for any additional features that may be significant for that individual AAC user.

• Etc…


This resource was designed to be printable. If you want to use it digitally you can save the PDF on an iPad or tablet and annotate it in the free Xodo or iLovePDF apps or another PDF app of your choice. Note: The priority tokens are NOT moveable when the PDF is viewed. Instead I would annotate the priority level on the cards.


Other resources available:

• Navigating Through AAC App Options (Webinar + Interactive Handout): https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Navigating-Through-AAC-App-Options-Webinar-Interactive-Handout-8446159

• AAC Test Drive: Device and App Comparison Worksheet: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/AAC-Test-Drive-Device-and-App-Comparison-Worksheet-8213870


Looking for in-depth info about features AAC apps? Check out these resources:

• iOS Symbol-Based: https://bit.ly/SymbolBasedAACapps

• iOS Text-Based: https://bit.ly/TextBasedAACapps

• Visual Scenes & Video Visual Scenes: https://bit.ly/AACvsd

• AAC Feature Matching Resource Bundle (includes all three, save 10%): https://bit.ly/aacFeatureMatchingBundle. If you are looking to purchase resources for several staff / team members, take a look at the Multiple Licenses discount (saves 20%)

• Robust Android AAC Apps (Google Play & Amazon Fire): https://bit.ly/RobustAndroidAACappChart

• Affordable and Free AAC apps & AAC-Related Apps (iOS, Android, Amazon Fire, Windows & a few web-based options): https://bit.ly/BasicAffordableAACchart


Have questions? The best way to reach me with any questions is via messaging on the OMazing Kids Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/. That way AAC related messages don’t get lost among the spam in my e-mail.


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

Symbol-Based AAC Feature Matching Resource (updated 10/30/22)

The Feature Matching Chart for the Top 12 Robust iOS Symbol-Based AAC Apps has been updated to add new rows related to the new iOS 16/iPadOS 16 child and adult voices, use of Google Maps to communicate, apps that can be used in Split View, updated features in these apps over the past month, etc…

Those who have previously purchased it on TPT can download the most current version for no additional cost: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Feature-Matching-Chart-for-the-Top-12-Robust-iOS-Symbol-Based-AAC-Apps-6867853

Ko-fi recurring monthly subscribers can find the download link on today’s post: https://ko-fi.com/post/Updated-Symbol-Based-AAC-Feature-Matching-Chart-1-H2H1G23H0 or the pinned post: https://ko-fi.com/Post/Links-to-posts-about-most-current-feature-matching-F1F5C9DMD


More info about this and other resources to compare features in AAC apps can be found on this post: https://bit.ly/5aacFeatureMatchingResources


Have a question? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

New Resource: Simple Eye Gaze Communication Flip Book

New Resource: Simple Eye Gaze Communication Flip Book: https://bit.ly/SimpleEyeGazeFlipBook


TPT Preview Video:


This 32-page PDF resource includes:

• a tabbed 9-page Simple Eye Gaze Communication Flip Book with Open Source symbols and four extra customizable pages

• a blank tabbed 9-page eye gaze flip book template that can be totally customized with your own pictures, symbols and text

• written & video instructions for how to easily customize the printable using the free linked websites prior to printing

• written & video instructions for cutting and assembling

Free Bonus Content: a download code for a digital companion file for GoTalk Now or GoTalk Now Plus. Includes links to a YouTube video to show how to find the GoTalk Now Online Gallery and an unlisted YouTube video to demo content in this companion file, settings to adjust to simplify the interface and editing within that AAC app, etc.


The design allows for quick communication and engagement with a Start Here cover page (I want, Tell you what I think, Quick Word & Something’s wrong), tabbed secondary pages, and longer tabbed tertiary pages. An blank set of the longer tabbed pages is provided for customization for each individual’s unique interests.


A totally blank template and tab labels is provided for those who want to translate it and use symbols relevant to that environment or culture.


The resource includes links to three free websites where you can download free Open Source symbols + a free website where you can import the PDF and then add your own text and symbols or photos prior to printing.


The Simple Eye Gaze Communication Book is easy to print, cut out, laminate and assemble. Written and video instructions are included.


I created this to be used as a simple way to get started with exploring eye gaze for communication. It’s sized to be portable and fit easily in a bag or tote for use in everyday environments and on the go. Parents of my students/patients/clients LOVED these and so did AAC users across a wide range of ages.


Free Bonus Content (requires an iPad & either the GoTalk Now or GoTalk Now Plus app by Attainment Company, neither of those are included with this purchase): This digital companion file for GoTalk Now matches the content of the Simple Eye Gaze Communication Flip Book. It is primarily designed for direct touch or scanning but other access methods might be possible depending on the particular model of iPad being used. I uploaded it as a template in the private sharing area on the GoTalk Now Online Gallery. It is exclusive free bonus content for those who purchased this resource. The free GoTalk Now Lite app and the inexpensive GoTalk Start app don’t have a way to import communication books.


Why was the Bonus Content created in GoTalk Now? It offers an Online Gallery with private sharing codes, it was easy to format it to match the content of the eye gaze communication flip book + GoTalk Now/GoTalk Now Plus offers a way to program buttons to link to play music that has been purchased and downloaded into the Apple Music app. See this blog post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2020/10/20/saving-videos-vs-linking-to-youtube-videos-for-use-in-gotalk-now-plus-how-to-save-youtube-videos/ and offers a way to play videos that are stored on the Camera Roll or linked from YouTube. See this blog post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2021/10/08/using-the-gotalk-now-app-as-adapted-access-to-play-songs/. Both are great for immediately reinforcing the request for a highly preferred song or video and for use as a means of adapted access to these leisure activities. I explored a few other options on iOS, Android and Amazon Fire but none offered all of what I needed.


Note: This AAC resource is not intended to be a robust communication option. It is something simple to allow early exploration of eye gaze for communication. The bonus content for those with an iPad and GoTalk Now or GoTalk Now Plus provides large target low cell count digital AAC for early exploration of AAC options. Both can also be a helpful supplemental resource as part of a comprehensive AAC system.


Looking for info about robust AAC apps? Check out my five feature matching resources: https://bit.ly/5aacFeatureMatchingResources


Looking for Core Word eye gaze options? I’ve seen a couple on TPT and a free one on the Project Core website.


Looking for info about eye gaze alternative access for non-tech PODD? Take a look at this website: https://cpec-store.myshopify.com/collections/podd-books/products/pragmatic-organisation-dynamic-display-podd-communication-book-alternative-access-templates (unfortunately that still isn’t commercially available in the USA or on letter-sized paper).


Looking for options for robust digital PODD on an iPad or other dedicated speech-generating devices? See my huge blog post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2018/01/10/i-have-something-to-say-about-podd/. I update that post periodically. It also includes some info about other AAC apps or vocabulary sets within them that are built with pragmatic branching organization. Examples include the Voco Chat gridset available in Grid for iPad (or Grid 3 on Windows devices), the Sequoia board set in CoughDrop, pasco by Ace Centre, etc…


Free handout “Resource Roundup: PODD”: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Resource-Roundup-PODD-7175047


Have a question? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

Updated Feature Matching Chart for the Top 12 Robust iOS Symbol-Based AAC Apps (8/23/22)

🎉 Resource Update Alert 🎉 8/23/22 Updated Feature Matching Chart for the Top 12 Robust iOS Symbol-Based AAC Apps. Those who have previously purchased this resource can download the latest version for no additional cost on TPT: https://bit.ly/SymbolBasedAACapps.

Current Ko-fi subscribers can access the latest update on today’s post: https://ko-fi.com/post/Update-for-iOS-Symbol-Based-AAC-Feature-Matching-C-K3K4EKXN5 or on the pinned post: https://ko-fi.com/Post/Links-to-posts-about-most-current-feature-matching-F1F5C9DMD


Want more info? See this blog post: Five Feature Matching Resources for AAC Apps (comparing features in AAC apps) + several videos comparing AAC apps across platforms (iPad, Android, Amazon Fire, Windows), https://bit.ly/5aacFeatureMatchingResources


Navigating Through AAC App Options (Recorded Webinar + Interactive Handout): https://bit.ly/NavigatingThruAACapps


Have a question? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com

New Resource: Navigating Through AAC App Options (Recorded Webinar + Interactive Handout)

Want a quick way to consider 10 features in AAC apps that may be critical for a particular user’s needs? This recorded webinar + interactive resource makes it simple and then has links for where you can get info for a deeper dive into learning more.

Available on TPT: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Navigating-Through-AAC-App-Options-Webinar-Interactive-Handout-8446159

  • While there isn’t a “perfect” AAC app there are features that might make one a better “fit” over another option.
  • Finding a good “fit” is similar to taking a test drive to find a form of transportation that you like and meets your needs at that point in your life or in that situation.
  • The “best” AAC options are the ones that meet the needs of that individual in that situation.

What’s included: 

  • Recorded Webinar (23:34 unlisted YouTube video)
  • Interactive Handout (20 page PDF)

TPT Preview Video:


Looking for in-depth info about features AAC apps? Check out these resources:


Have a question? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/


Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC, OMazing Kids AAC Consulting

• Teachers Pay Teachers Store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Omazing-Kids-Aac-Consulting

• YouTube: https://youtube.com/user/amoorad1

• Ko-Fi: https://ko-fi.com/omazingkidsaac

• OMazing Kids AAC Consulting Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsAAC/

• AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

• GoTalk Now AAC & GoVisual Visual Scene Apps – Ideas and Sharing Facebook Group: https://bit.ly/GoTalkNowAACappGroup

• Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/omazingkidsaac

• Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

• Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

• Linktree: https://linktr.ee/amoorad1

• LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/angelamooradomazingkidsaac

• Blog: https://omazingkidsllc.com