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AAC Unveiled: Dispelling Myths and Empowering Communication - A Panel Discussion

AAC Unveiled: Dispelling Myths and Empowering Communication - A Panel Discussion

AAC & Assistive Tech

In this engaging panel discussion, we bring together experts in Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) to address frequently asked questions and debunk prevalent myths. Throughout this course, our esteemed panelists will delve into the fundamentals of AAC, discussing its significance, benefits, and the vast range of users who can benefit from these innovative solutions. Together, we will shed light on the misconceptions surrounding AAC, dismantling barriers that might hinder its widespread acceptance. Join us for this enlightening panel discussion, where you will gain valuable insights into the world of an AAC user, discover inspiring success stories, and acquire the tools needed to advocate for inclusive communication practices. Whether you are a caregiver, educator, therapist, or someone interested in empowering individuals with communication difficulties, this course will provide you with a deeper understanding of AAC's potential and power.


  • Krista Howard

    Krista is a multimodal communicator and a lifelong user of AAC. She utilizes a variety of forms of communication including a PRC-Accent with Unity 144, an iPad and iPhone with various AAC applications, and PicSeePal a light-tech housing solution for her alternative and augmentative communication needs. Krista has provided AAC mentoring, training, and support in teletherapy, classrooms, day-treatment programs for adults, and various Virtual Social Groups including Kate Ahern’s AAC Voices and Out and About. Krista has presented at many conferences around the nation sharing her experience as an AAC user and a model for other AAC users. Krista worked at Gompers Day program as an AT/ AAC Specialist Assistant prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. She is currently an AAC implementation consultant for various school districts in the Phoenix area and is a home-service provider for a young woman who utilizes AAC. Krista is an ambassador for PRC-Saltillo and PicSeePal USA, LLC. Krista is also a parent of an 11-year-old son. In addition to raising her son and working, she is a student at Northern Arizona University pursuing her Bachelor’s Degree and is enrolled in the SLPA program at NAU also. She plans to be the first SLPA who is an AAC user. 

  • Cara Falade

    M.A., CCC-SLP

    Cara Falade, MA, CCC-SLP is an Ohio outpatient speech pathologist. Her current caseload ranges from 20 months to 47 years old. With over 15 funded AAC devices in the last 2 years, Cara is dedicated to helping individuals and their caregivers navigate finding the amplification for their voices. She shares all things speech & AAC on Instragram (@thebuckeyslp) as well as self care for professionals and her experiences being Black in a monotony field. She is a proud member of the National Black Association of Speech-Language and Hearing (NBASLH).

  • Sarah Gregory

    M.S. CCC-SLP

    Sarah Gregory, M.S. CCC-SLP is a Speech-Language Pathologist and works as an Assistive Technology and inclusive programming consultant in the Ithaca City School District in Upstate New York. She specializes in Augmentative and Alternative Communication in a public school setting with a focus on inclusion. Sarah has presented on these topics at national and statewide conferences. She shares ideas and strategies for AAC and teletherapy on her YouTube channel, as well as on Twitter and Instagram @SarahGregorySLP.

  • Emily Diaz


    Emily Diaz, M.S., CCC-SLP is a licensed and ASHA certified speech-language pathologist with a special interest in AAC. She has 7 years of experience supporting children & young adults with complex communication needs in the school setting. Emily shares free ideas & strategies for AAC implementation on her YouTube channel, as well as Instagram (@emilydiazslp). She also offers paid workshops, webinars, and consulting services through her private practice - Emily Diaz, SLP.

  • Karina Saechao


    Karina Saechao, M.A., CCC-SLP is an SLP, licensed in CA and KS. She holds a certificate as an assistive technology specialist and is a Ph.D. student at the University of Kansas. Karina’s research interests are in African American English, child language, AAC. Karina is the Founder & CEO of Golden Oak Speech Therapy, and specializes in AAC, AT, language, literacy, and caregiver & educator coaching.

  • Alma Partiday

    M.A., CCC-SLP

    Alma M. Partida is a bicultural/bilingual Spanish Speech-Language Pathologist. Alma received her Master’s of Arts degree from San Jose State specializing in AAC through the Project AACes grant. She is a school-based SLP and AAC consultant for preschool to elementary aged students for 5+years. She is also a community partner and lecturer for CSUMB: Speech-Language Pathology graduate program. Alma has presented at CSHA, ASHA, SLP Summit, and various other organizations through her work as co-creater of Diverse AAC. Alma manages the Instagram account @AACForYouandMe and @DiverseAAC.

  • Melissa Tapia

    M.S., CCC-SLP

    Melissa Tapia is a bicultural/bilingual Spanish certified speech-language pathologist in the state of Illinois. She has 5+ years of experience working as a school-based and early intervention SLP specializing in AAC, bilingualism, and speech sound disorders. Tapia is also the owner and founder of Hablame Speech Therapy providing in-home individualized patient speech-language services. She believes involving families/caregivers to become knowledgeable about how to best support their children is essential for the success of her clients. Tapia manages the instagram account, @hablame_de _language.

  • Maria De Leon

    M.S., CCC-SLP

    Maria De Leon is a bicultural/bilingual Speech-Language Pathologist specializing in Augmentative Alternative Communication (AAC). She received her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and her Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at San Francisco State University with a specialization in culturally responsive AAC practices. De Leon currently works at ATEC Goodwill of Orange County as an SLP specializing in AAC evaluations, trials, and training for various facilities and entities, including training for families, teachers, SLPs, and support staff to the greater Southern California area. She has 10+ years in the special education sector as a special education assistant, early interventionist, and response to intervention (RTI) teacher. De Leon manages the Instagram account, @code.switch.slp.

Learning Objectives

List common myths and misconceptions about AAC eligibility
Identify solutions to navigate challenges with AAC implementation
Describe success stories of AAc users



15 minutesIntroductions, Perspectives of an AAC user
15 minutesReview of benefits, best practices, eligibility
25 minutesDiscuss solutions to frequently asked questions
5 minutesQ&A



Speakers - FinancialSarah Gregory, Cara Falade, Emily Diaz, Krista Howard, Karina Saechao and Bilingue AAC are receiving compensation from Bright Ideas for their participation in this course.
Speakers - NonfinancialSarah Gregory, Cara Falade, Emily Diaz, Krista Howard, Karina Saechao and Bilingue AAC have no additional non-financial relationships to disclose.
Course - ContentSarah Gregory, Cara Falade, Emily Diaz, Krista Howard, Karina Saechao and Bilingue AAC have no additional content information to disclose.
Course - Financial Support & In KindThis course is being sponsored by SLP Toolkit.



This course is offered for 0.1 ASHA CEUs, Intermediate Level, Professional Area

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AAC Unveiled: Dispelling Myths and Empowering Communication - A Panel Discussion

Your purchase includes access to (1) recorded course and submittal of your participation to the ASHA registry. *You must opt-in and add your ASHA credentials after completing all course steps. The course is available through 12/31/2024.
One time fee