Alternative Method of Speaking (AMS)

Selection Tool

The Alternative Method of Speaking [AMS] Selection Tool provides a ‘process’ for helping an individual child or adult, who does not use spoken words effectively or at all, become an effective speaker. This tool in its original analog form was part of an extensive and detailed chapter on ‘Methods of Speaking’ in Essential for Living (EFL): A Communication, Behavior, and Functional Skills Curriculum and Assessment.

Although this tool can be used with any curriculum or assessment instrument, a copy of the EFL Handbook and Teaching Manual will be helpful, as components of this tool and recommendations for its use are described in this chapter. [We are grateful for the previous digital versions of this tool, which were provided by Nick Kneer and Eb Blakely]The ‘process’ described in this tool begins with determining the individual’s Vocal Profile, which helps parents or care providers determine if spoken words can be used more effectively or if an alternative method of speaking is necessary.

If a spoken-word repertoire is limited, suggestions for improving that repertoire are provided. If an individual needs an alternative method of speaking, this ‘process’ continues with a thoughtful consideration of the current repertoire of each individual child or adult, rather than an estimate of cognitive ability or the preferences of a practitioner. This tool then individualizes the selection process. Once a method is selected, it is tested to confirm its effectiveness and the likelihood it will last a lifetime. [We strongly suggest using a computer or a tablet with this tool, rather than a phone]