The aim of the study was to collect information about American speech-language pathologists' preprofessional training, practice, self-perceived competence, adequacy of resources, and interest in continuing education related to augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) assessment and intervention strategies addressing each of the five language domains: semantics, pragmatics, phonology, morphology, and syntax.


An anonymous online survey of American speech-language pathologists was conducted.


A majority of participants rated their preprofessional training for assessing semantic and pragmatic skills positively. Otherwise, a majority of participants rated preprofessional training for assessment and intervention negatively across language domains. High interest in continuing education opportunities addressing assessment and intervention was found across language domains. A discrepancy between responses to questions addressing semantic and pragmatic skills and responses to questions addressing phonological, morphological, and syntactic skills was consistently found for ratings of preprofessional training, practice, perceived competence, and adequacy of resources. In all cases, higher frequencies of positive ratings were found for questions addressing semantic and pragmatic skills.


Improved preprofessional training and continuing education opportunities are needed to support AAC assessment and intervention across language domains. Perspectives and practice patterns reflect a historical emphasis on semantic and pragmatic skills in the external evidence base, even though there are several recent journal articles addressing morphology and syntax in clients who use AAC.


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