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Responsivity 101

Responsiveness strategies can help school staff support individuals they may inadvertently communicate with less.

July 22, 2020

Looking for some talking points for an upcoming staff training? Consider teaching your co-workers about responsiveness—the evidence supports it!


Responsivity refers to how much and how well a communication partner reacts when a child attempts to convey a message. It’s a critical starting point; without it, the communication exchange ends when the child tries to initiate. With it, communication opportunities can flourish and we can teach staff more complex skills (e.g., aided AAC modeling) to enrich those exchanges.


Researchers in this study observed school staff members interacting with children with significant intellectual and developmental disabilities and found the following…

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