Communication Alternatives in Autism

Perspectives on Typing and Spelling Approaches for the Nonspeaking

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SKU: 9781476678917 Categories: , , , Tag:

About the Book

Ten autistic self-advocates share their experiences with alternative forms of communication such as rapid prompting method (RPM) and facilitated communication (FC), both highly controversial. Their narratives document the complexities that autistic individuals navigate—in both educational and community settings—when choosing to use approaches that utilize letter boards and keyboards. While the controversies remain—RPM requires further scientific study, and FC is subject to criticism about confirmation bias—these individuals share powerful stories in the context of aiming for disability rights. The book concludes with a chapter about best practices for educators, particularly for schools and colleges that have students who use these communication methods.

About the Author(s)

Edlyn Vallejo Peña is an associate professor of higher education leadership and the director of the Autism and Communication Center at California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, California. She has published over two dozen journal articles and book chapters in the fields of education and disability.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Edlyn Vallejo Peña

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: appendices, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2019
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7891-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3713-6
Imprint: Toplight

Book Reviews & Awards

  • Communication Alternatives in Autism is a book that has been needed for a long time. It gives voice to the thoughts and humanity of individuals with autism who use various means to communicate via the written word. The experience and knowledge of Dr. Edlyn Peña who is both a parent and a scholar shines through to help us better understand the lives and journey of a remarkable group of authors. Enjoy!”—Anne M. Donnellan, professor emerita, University of Wisconsin-Madison and University of San Diego
  • “In Communication Alternatives in Autism, Dr. Edlyn Peña addresses one of the most controversial topics in research and education for non-speaking communicators and those with limited speech—the authenticity of communication through typing and spelling. It is well known that a small group of critics have dominated discourse disputing the validity of such communication…. For those who believe ongoing discourse should not be shut down, and especially for those who already think the die is cast, this important work is a significant step forward in understanding why we must intensify our efforts to understand and give voice to those who cannot speak.”—Barry M. Prizant, Ph.D., CC-SLP, Brown University, author of Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism