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Boesch, M., Wendt, O., Subramanian, A. & Hsu, N. (2013). Comparative efficacy of the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) versus a speech‐generating device: Effects on requesting.

Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 7, 480‐493.
Abstract: An experimental, single‐subject research study investigated the comparative efficacy of the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) versus a speech‐generating device (SGD) in developing requesting skills for three elementary‐age children with severe autism and little to no functional speech. Results demonstrated increases in requesting behavior for all participants across intervention phases with both augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) intervention strategies; however, difficulties were observed with picture discrimination. The Wilcoxon signed pair test did not reveal significant differences between PECS and the SGD for any participant. Findings suggest PECS and SGD are equally appropriate for developing initial requesting skills. Based on the current findings, successful implementation of either AAC strategy is achievable when appropriate instructional strategies are used.

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