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  • Writer's pictureRebecca Bright

#CM2023 round up

The start of the autumn is marked by the annual Communication Matters conference in Leeds each September. This year promised and delivered a great event with research sharing, personal stories for AAC users and networking in the exhibit hall. A few of the highlights were:

  1. Raising awareness about how, where and when to use visual scene displays Our presentation slot allowed Rebecca to help run through the evidence for using visual scene displays across the lifespan of AAC users, from young children to adults with aphasia. We showcased our new video visual scene display function in Scene & Heard Pro and shared examples of how video VSDs are being used and just how simple it was to make video VSDs to support communication opportunities and independence.

  2. Kate Fryer and Charlie Moran provided an update on their VIVOCA study. Kate and Charlie from the University of Sheffield shared how they had worked up their research protocol with input from AAC users and were now recruiting and setting up participants to use VocaTempo for six months to understand more about how it is being used and what support is needed for it to be effective.

  3. Discussing voice banking in 2023. Apple's imminent release of personal voice meant that voice banking was a hot topic in teh exhibit hall and an interesting conversation with the voice banking providers we partner with (Speak Unique, Voice Keeper and Acapela). Everyone agrees that Apple's move helps shine a light on voice banking, and we all look forward to seeing how things will play out in terms of balancing important factors in voice banking, including the need for support for the process, children's voices, other languages; voice repair and using your voice on all your devices.

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