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peer 1:

Communication disorders can have challenges such as language but can be good with social interaction. People with autism can have challenges with social contexts communicating. There is a difference between communication and speech. Some people think that communication is the same thing as verbal speech. Though verbal communication is just a piece of the communication. Research shows that the large majority of communication is nonverbal (Watson,2008). The exact percentages are not clear, but it seems that at least 70% of the communication we use is body language. (Watson,2008)

The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS), is what is used to allow people with little or no communication skills to communicate with use of pictures and give them to someone for a desired item in exchange for that item. A child or adult with autism can use PECS to communicate a request, a thought, or anything that can reasonably be displayed or symbolized on a picture card. (Special Learning)

In order to see and understand how effective communication skills are for a person with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) there are different ways to approach the person and the situation:

*Find out what you have in common because sharing interests can be a powerful communication tool.

*Talk where there is minimal distraction around the individual, if possible, avoid flashing lights, crowds, and annoying or distracting sounds.

*Do not pressure them to make eye contact with you because it is uncomfortable for an autistic person to look at people in the face for extended periods of time and it disrupts their focus.

*Be aware that people on the spectrum may miss nonverbal cues, such as body language or facial expressions. This means they may not understand what you are thinking or feeling at any given time.

*Avoid touching them without warning because they tend to have a sensory differences, autistic people can feel startled and upset by unexpected touch so you have to let them initiate the touch, or let them see it coming so they have a chance to decline or accept it.


Special Learning, Inc. (n.d.). Picture exchange communication system. Retrieved from https://www.special learning.com/article/picture_exchange_communication_system

Watson, L. R., & Flippin, M. (2008). Language outcomes for young children with autism spectrum disorders. The ASHA Leader, 13(7), 8–12. Retrieved from https://leader.pubs.asha.org/doi/10.1044/leader.FT…

Peer 2:

The Picture Exchange Communication System, (PECS) is an effective assistive technology, (AT) used to support and enhance children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ASD. PESC is exceptional AT for children with limited communication skills. The usage of PECS allows the child to express feelings and desires and the child may use a single picture to show a need like hunger or play. ASD children learn easier with visual ques therefore pictures are valuable and are useful in developing a sentence that describes a desire. Also, the PECS has six instructional phases, the trainer and/ or caregiver are trained to teach the child to use picture illustration for communications. Additional complex sentences are structure after the sixth phase is reached, thereby encouraging independent communication (Picture Exchange Communication System – Special Learning Article n.d.)

PECS is an evidence-based practical instructional intervention process, found by researchers to be an effective, positive process in children, youth, and adults with ASD (The National Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder n.d.). Researchers support the use of picture symbols finding it valuable in early intervention, mainly when the child is the expression a need. On the other hand, the researcher says they lack evidence to determine the benefits of behavior function in young children with ASD and there is insufficient evidence to determine the benefit of PESC to adolescents and adults. More research is needed to determine the scientific method about the effectiveness of social communication as it pertains to asking for items and speech. A larger number and more diverse participants will be needed. In the same way, PESC is an upfront constructive method that is reasonable -priced and time effective (Picture Exchange Communication System and Autism Ranking, 2017).

Finally, PECS is accredited for increasing communication particularly requesting objects and the child is encouraged to express communication by picking the desired picture followed by physically claiming the pictured item they have chosen. Also, the PECS process is easy for the trainer to learn therefore making it easier to train the child and the first phase of the process is easily understood by the ASD student. On the other hand, the PESC is difficult to use beyond asking for something, children seldom reach phase six. The vocabulary is limited, and less emphasis is applied to grammar comprehension making the process less effective communicating complex ideas (Low-tech AAC: Picture Exchange (Pros and Cons) 2019.).


Low-tech AAC: Picture Exchange (Pros and Cons). (2019, March 30). Retrieved July 25, 2020, from https://superpowerspeech.com/2018/04/low-tech-aac-picture-exchange-pros-and-cons.html

The National Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://autismpdc.fpg.unc.edu/evidence-based-practices

Picture Exchange Communication System and Autism Ranking. (2017, December 19). Retrieved July 25, 2020, from http://www.researchautism.net/interventions/36/picture-exchange-communication-system-and-autism

Picture Exchange Communication System – Special Learning Article. (n.d.). Retrieved July 25, 2020, from https://www.special-learning.com/article/picture_exchange_communication_system

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