Augmentative and Alternative Communication

Courses and Events


Online AAC Learning

CALL AAC Webinars

CALL delivers regular short (approx. 30 minutes) free webinars on a range of topics, many of which relate to AAC. You can join these 'live' or replay them from the bank of archived Webinars.

Upcoming webinars

Archived AAC webinars include:


  • 15 March Book Creator
  • 29 March What's new in Eye Gaze
  • 13 September C.O.D.E.S. Framework and Toolkit - Creating Effective and Competent Communicators
  • 6 December Using the Tools2Talk+ App for Symbolised Resources


  • 10 February Top 5 Apps for Early Level Communication and the Curriculum
  • 2 March Exploring the Eye Gaze Software Curve
  • 4 May Widgit Software Apps Supporting Language and Literacy


  • 11 February Text-based AAC Apps and iOS8 keyboards
  • 4 March Go Talk Now App
  • 9 September Accessible Books for Pre/Early Readers and AAC Users
  • ​11 November Clicker Communicator
  • 18 November Matrixmaker​
  • 9 December Personal Communication Passports


  • 25 February; Apps for Skills Assessment, to support AAC Choices
  • 26 March Widgit Go
  • 17 September Sounding Board App
  • 2 December Introduction to Online Staff Training Modules for AAC, including videos, online training modules, downloadable posters, resources) as per this website; 

There will be Webinars on various AAC topics throughout 2017/18, all at 4pm (register in advance and check in a few minutes early, for tech checks).  Check in with website for up to date details. 

Manchester Metropolitan University AAC Assessment Modules

Screenshot from ModuleLevel 1 and Level 2 Modules on AAC Assessment were produced by Manchester Metropolitan University, with support from NHS Education Scotland's Now Hear Me project. Module 1 helps people recognise the components of an AAC Assessment; recognise the role of their clients, families and other professionals; recognise techniques and roles within AAC Assessment; recognise when to seek support for an AAC Assessment and from whom. Module 2 consists of six chapters, looking at: people who might use AAC; understanding types of assessment; AAC assessment techniques; contributing to AAC assessment; access methods; measuring change. The modules contain lots of useful video material, but were created using Flash, which won't work on iPads and may require additional software for computer.

Are These the Right Words? (Vocabulary Selection)

This is an online webinar / module, free to view on Vimeo created and delivered by Rae Sonnenmeier Ph.D of the Institute of Disability, University of New Hampshire, USA. This presentation provides a useful summary of the key issues, covering: choosing appropriate messages; Core Vocabulary and Extended (Fringe) Vocabulary; language representation options; different symbol sets; organising vocabulary  (activity grids, semantic / categories, syntactic, visual scenes). 

The presentation lasts approximately half an hour.​ It is one of a series of webinars illustrating different aspects of AAC.

Communication - augmentative and assistive strategies

This is a Module in a collection of Training materials for teachers of learners with severe, profound and complex learning difficulties, originally produced by the Department of Education for England in 2012, but occasionally updated since then. The Module is broken down into 34 sub-topics, many of which having more than one slide. Video clips are embedded into some of the slides and there are links to other resources. This is the main module for people wanting to find out about AAC, but parts of the other 15 modules may also be of interest, so it is a good idea to have a look at the full list of modules included in the resource.

AbleNet Webinars (archived)

You may like to explore one or more of  a series of archived Webinars from the American AAC /educational materials company AbleNet, covering a range of AAC topics. Each of these is 40 - 60 minutes long. They use Flash so will not run on a tablet or phone unless a special App is downloaded first (e.g, Puffin for iPad).

Smartbox Webinars

Learn more about Smartbox software - with a focus on the Grid 2 or 3 and grid set vocabularies - and hardware, through free online webinars, with staff on hand to answer questions and queries, as well as showing off tips and tricks.

CALL Scotland courses, Edinburgh or in your own setting

See CALL Website for details of the ongoing 2017 - 2018 Training Programme, or arrange customised training for your own site / team;  Contact CALL Scotland to sign up to the CALL Scotland E-Newsletter for ongoing information about future events.

Technology to Support Learners with Complex Communication Support Needs (CCSN) in the Classroom

Personal Communication Passports

  • Event date: 10.5.2018
  • Event cost: £40 for morning seminar, £80 to include afternoon workshop.
  • More information: see CALL website

Other AAC learning opportunities in Scotland

Tobii Dynavox Training Events

Tobii Dynavox are hosting a series of free training events giving people a chance to learn about and get hands on with their new Snap + Core First AAC software and the 'ecosystem' that they have created around it to support both the person using AAC as well as their communication partners, as well as other Power Academies for Boardmaker Online and Eye gaze. Scottish Dates are as follows

Communication Matters Road Show in Scotland 2018

  • Event date: 22nd May 2018
  • Event cost: £10 (£5 for members of Communication Matters)
  • ​Event location: Golden Jubilee Conference Hotel, Clydebank
  • For more info & to apply for a place: visit Communication Matters website 

Communication Matters Roadshows are product demonstration days that give attendees the opportunity to keep up to date with the latest advances in the field of AAC. Each day consists of five sessions which provide information and offer up-to-date knowledge on the range of AAC products available in the UK. There is an exhibition period when delegates can talk to suppliers and try out products (there is no opportunity for hands-on during the presentation sessions). 

Open to all -  people who use AAC (16+), parents, carers and professionals alike.

Talking Mats Courses

Talking Mats courses are delivered regularly in various locations around Scotland (and indeed, 'the world'). Training is available at Foundation and Advanced levels, and organisations can also organise bespoke training to meet their specific needs.Check the Talking Mats website for up to date details.

Online training is also available.


International AAC Events

International Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication (ISAAC) Conference 2018

  • Event date: 21 - 26 July 2018
  • Event location: Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre, Queensland, Australia
  • More information re prices and registration etc.: ISAAC website

Please note that this includes:

  • Pre-Conference Workshops, 21 & 22 July 2018
  • AAC Camp (users) 21 & 22 July 2018
  • Main Conference 23 - 26 August 2018 



AAC learning opportunities elsewhere in the UK

Communication Matters National AAC Conference

  • Event date: 9 - 11 September 2018
  • Event location: University of Leeds
  • More information re prices and registration etc.: Communication Matters website
  • Booking opens January 2018
  • Augmentative Communication in Practice:Scotland are offering a sponsorship for one AAC User, resident in Scotland, accompanied by up to two personal care assistants, to attend the conference. See the Augmentative Communication in Practice: Scotland web site for further information. Applications close on Monday 20th February.

The Communication Matters National AAC Conference is the UK’s leading annual AAC event, with a diverse programme of plenaries, presentations and exhibition held over two and a half days.The conference provides a unique forum to meet and exchange information with representatives from all disciplines associated with AAC, including people who use AAC, parents, carers, professionals and suppliers of AAC equipment. Communication Matters encourages and supports people who use AAC to attend.

ACE Centre

Various training courses on aspects of AAC and /or Assistive Technology are available through ACE, either in Oxford, or - nearer for Scots - in Oldham. Check the website for up to date details.  


Further AAC learning opportunities

As part of work on the IPAACKS framework (Informing and Profiling AAC Knowledge and Skills) commissioned by NES as part of the 'A Right to Speak' initiative, Janet Scott of SCTCI has compiled (February 2014) a useful wider listing of possible AAC learning opportunities, although ongoing updating of this listing is not yet in place / assured.