Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)

The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) is an augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) system (i.e. a communication method other than speech) that involves the physical exchange of pictures to communicate with another person for the purpose of requesting or commenting.

PECS stands for Picture Exchange Communication System. It is an alternative communication system developed in 1985 by Andy Bondy and Lori Frost, to help children affected by autism convey their thoughts and needs

A common challenge for children and adults with autism is their ability to communicate. … You can use pictures of favorite toys or activities to help your child request what they would like to do. Velcro affixed to the back of the picture and to a board is a good method to carry this out.

The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) is a system to assist people in communication who are unable to do so through speech. The system uses picture cards for communication. It is one method that a child with a severe speech disorder can use to indicate his basic needs and wants

PECS consists of six phases and begins by teaching an individual to give a single picture of a desired item or action to a “communicative partner” who immediately honors the exchange as a request.

The Six Phases of the Picture Exchange Communication System Are:

PECS PHASE I: How to Communicate. …

PECS PHASE II: Distance and Persistence. …

PECS PHASE III: Picture Discrimination. …

PECS PHASE IV: Sentence Structure. …

PECS PHASE V: Answering Questions. …

PECS PHASE VI: Commenting

The researchers concluded that PECS is effective in helping children with autism use pictures to communicate; however, evidence that PECS helps children acquire vocal speech is not as strong, perhaps because the quality and quantity of research on speech outcomes has been insufficient to produce a clear pattern of results. The researchers also established three child characteristics that may be pretreatment identifiers of children with autism likely to respond to PECS: limited motor imitation, strong object exploration, and limited joint attention

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