Two years later, the session was repeated at the Edcamp at ATIA 2018, with Chris C and Shaun Pearson acting as moderators. The debate focused not only on the definition of new agreements, but also on the consensus on the text of previous agreements. This is what emerges from ATIA EdCamp 2018: padlet.com/cichoskikelly/aacagreements2018. Again, the question remains how many more agreements could be discovered if participants were not time-limited. The website states that AAFC agreements are “best” practices that are obtained from stakeholders invested in improving the accountability, selection and implementation of AACs. Stakeholders include practitioners (but not limited) to AAFC practitioners, academics, designers, parents, families and users. These agreements are supported, whenever possible, by research. This site, which is aimed at professionals, has a very clear layout, simple links to research studies and articles that ensure the “AAC agreements”. In 2019, Chris B, Chris C and Shaun allowed an “AAC Agreements” discussion at ATIA Edcamp. What is unique about this particular discussion is that a large majority of the group chose to miss other Edcamp meetings and continued to engage in the creation of additional agreements for the entire evening. Thanks to the participants present, the following provisions were added to the list: padlet.com/cichoskikelly/aacagreements2019 EdCamp is an “unseated conference” organized by the participants. Participants are encouraged to put their proposed themes on a board of directors and then facilitate discussion.
There are no “experts” but only people who want to dialogue and share their experiences. That`s exactly what Chris C wanted! Could a group of people from around the world come together, share their experiences on the front line and develop a list of common “best” practices? What principles would each consider to be universal truths regarding the review and implementation of AAFC? On Friday evening, after a long day of conference, about 20 committed people attended a meeting where they drew up a list of 12 statements known as the “AAC Agreements” (padlet.com/cichoskikelly/aacagreements). At the end of the meeting, another issue remained unanswered. How many other agreements could be reached if participants had more time? The group is for those who work with and evaluate individuals for AAFC. The group`s objective is to discuss with other experts everything related to AAFC and to exchange useful information. Shaun Pearson (@shaun_slp): Shaun is a language pathologist and practicer in Calgary, Alberta, Canada for educational information services. Currently, he works as an Assistant Technology Therapist and supports students with complex communication needs between the ages of 5 and 21. The focus is on maintaining relationships and building capacity with other therapists, teachers, classroom teachers and families. RERC on AAFC is a collaborative centre committed to developing knowledge and innovative engineering solutions in increased and alternative communications. It was funded by NIDILRR, 2014-19. Previously, AAC-RERC was funded by NIDRR from 2008 to 2013. This Facebook page is a forum for researchers and practitioners to share innovative research and clinic tools to help people who use AAFC in the health field.
This link is available on the Facebook page for the Talking with Tech AAC Podcast, with two voice pathologists answering questions, discussing new research and providing updates on the latest developments in the AAFC field. The podcast is available on Apple podcasts. The facilitators of the agreements acknowledge that similar efforts were made prior to the 2016 ATIA Edcamp event. Similarities were found between the AAC Agreements project and the NJC Communication Bill of Rights (BoR).