Child & Family Development Child & Family Development

July 12, 2017

Speech therapist, Logan Carter completes PECS® training


Speech therapist, Logan Carter MS CCC-SLP, completed a continuing education course about the widely used Picture Exchange Communication System¬Æ (PECS).   

  • Picture Exchange Communication System¬Æ (PECS) Level 1 training
  • Picture Exchange Communication System¬Æ (PECS) to Speech Generating Devices (SGD)- Guidelines & Recommendations

PECS was developed in 1985 as a unique augmentative/alternative communication intervention package for individuals with autism spectrum disorder and related developmental disabilities. It has received worldwide recognition for focusing on the initiation component of communication. PECS does not require complex or expensive materials. It was created with families, educators, and resident care providers in mind, so is readily used in a range of settings.  PECS begins by teaching an individual to give a picture of a desired item to a ‚Äúcommunicative partner”, who immediately honors the exchange as a request. The system goes on to teach discrimination of pictures and how to put them together in sentences. In the more advanced phases, individuals are taught to answer questions and to comment. 

PECS has been successful with individuals of all ages demonstrating a variety of communicative, cognitive and physical difficulties. Some learners using PECS also develop speech and others may transition to a speech generating or augmentative communication device. The body of research supporting the effectiveness of PECS continues to expand, with research from countries around the world.

Read more about PECS on their website

Logan enjoyed both courses and shares: 

  • The Picture Exchange Communication System¬Æ  (PECS) is a communication training program that is designed to help students who do not speak at all, speak only when prompted to, or those who exhibit no functional or socially acceptable speech. PECS is an intervention that has been researched and proven to help students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) communicate; however, the picture based system can also be used with a variety of individuals who have other related communication difficulties. The most essential component when learning to communicate, is initiating. The student being trained to use PECS is initially taught ‚Äúhow‚Äù to communicate by using a single picture in exchange for a highly motivating reward, called a reinforce. Students progress through six phases starting with single pictures, then later learn to combine pictures to make sentences. These phases are implemented across environments and with a variety of people in order for them to remain effective. PECS is extremely systematic and highly tailored to each person. I am excited that I am able to provide individuals with a functional and practical method of communication. 
  • As the person moves through all the phases of PECS, a specific and customized communication notebook is developed just for him.   Once able to use PECS across settings and with multiple communication partners, some individuals may be an ideal candidate for transitioning to a Speech Generating Device (SGD). With this training, I am more able to assist with the transition of choosing a device and teaching functional use of a device. 

The Child and Family Development team of 8 speech therapists offering free phone intakes and screens.