How to get better help and support for AAC users? Take part in research!

Communication Matters has set up the Research Involvement Network to support and encourage research into Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) in the UK by building a list of people who are interested in taking part in research. The Network was launched in September 2011.

Research is a process of gathering information and analysing it to increase our understanding of a topic or problem. Research can establish facts, solve problems or develop new theories. Findings from research into AAC could help the Government, the NHS and local authorities to understand better what services are needed. Research evidence could help practitioners to improve services and support for AAC users to communicate. Communication Matters believes it is important that more AAC users are involved in research as this will make research more relevant and more likely to be used.

You can help to ensure that our research will be directly relevant to the people who can benefit from it most, by sharing your knowledge and experience. We are currently recruiting members in the UK. We are particularly keen to recruit more AAC users and family members and carers of AAC users. The first person who uses AAC to become a member of the Research Involvement Network was Simon Stevens (pictured right).

Who can join the Network?

AAC users, both adults and children

Family members and carers of AAC users

Practitioners from the fields of health, education and social care

What might be involved?

If you join the Network you will receive information from Communication Matters about opportunities to be involved in AAC research projects that may be relevant to you. You can decide whether or not you wish to participate. There are many ways to be involved in research including: completing a questionnaire; being interviewed about your experiences; or providing advice to researchers.

Benefits of joining the Network

You may benefit in some of these ways:

  • Help other AAC users

  • Receive information about current AAC research projects

  • Learn about what is involved in research

  • Learn new skills

  • Your knowledge and experience of AAC will be valued

  • Opportunities to shape the development of research

How can I join?

If you would like to join the Research Involvement Network, please download the enrolment form in Word or PDF format (see below), and then email the completed form to or email us to send you a stamped reply envelope.

Information for Researchers

Would you like help in finding participants for research into AAC? Please download and read our guidelines for researchers with an application form. Before completing the form please contact us for an initial discussion, email:

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