Apps for Autism – Proloquo2Go featured on CBS News 60 Minutes

Proloquo2GoProloquo2Go for children with autism on 60 Minutes

Proloquo2Go was the main feature of a CBS News 60 Minutes segment on children with autism.

(CBS News) For severely autistic people, communication is often impossible, leaving them unable to convey what they want or need. But as Lesley Stahl reports, touch-screen apps designed for tablet computers like the iPad are now giving autistic people new ways to express themselves, some for the first time. Teachers and parents are hailing the technology as a breakthrough, one that can reveal the true depth of knowledge and emotion trapped behind a wall of silence.

This segment featured a number of important examples of how Proloquo2Go (along with other apps for autism and children with special needs) are having an impact on the lives of children with special needs and their families. It can sometimes be difficult to get to the full video segment on the 60 Minutes website, so we have embedded the entire 14 minute clip below:

While we have hesitations about specific apps designated only for autism (i.e., apps for Autism), it is always important to raise awareness on autism and it’s impact on children and their families. It is incredible to see children communicate with their families, some for the first time in their lives and Proloquo2Go has truly revolutionized the use of augmentative and alternative communication for families.

Benefits of augmentative and alternative communication apps like Proloquo2Go

Proloquo2Go is an augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) app on a non-dedicated device (a device not only used for AAC). We wanted to share some of the benefits of AAC, according to research in this area (see a recent article by Cafiero):

  • Supports functional spontaneous communication
  • Facilitates access to social information
  • Facilitates inclusion at home, school, and community
  • Facilitates greater independence in the home, school, and community
  • Facilitates access to literacy experiences
  • Reduces frustration
  • Provides voice and ears to people with communication difficulties
  • Facilitates an improved sense of self concept

Proloquo2Go and other AAC apps are definitely tools that every speech and language pathologist or assistive technology specialist should have “in their pocket” for children that they work with. While it isn’t appropriate for every child (and we strongly emphasize this, as there is no “one size fits all” for implementation of AAC) the barriers to using Proloquo2Go as an AAC app are very low and easy for families to learn to use effectively, with the help of a professional.

Proloquo2Go and inov8 Educational Consulting

inov8 Educational Consulting is proud to be one of the Proloquo2go Canadian Resource Centers that helps families of children with special needs learn to effectively use this app. We are using Proloquo2Go as well as other excellent AAC apps with children, adolescents and adults — but there is also much more out there. You might be interested in our special series, “There’s a Special App for That” that focuses on iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch apps for children with special needs:

 

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5 Responses to Apps for Autism – Proloquo2Go featured on CBS News 60 Minutes

  1. charles lafortune October 24, 2011 at 10:30 pm #

    Proloquo2go is an amazing APP! Will they make a french version? My son is a non verbal autistic 9 year old boy who attends Giant Step school in NDG. A french version of Prolquo2go would be a blessing…

    thanks you for your time

    Charles Lafortune

    • Andrea Prupas October 25, 2011 at 12:27 pm #

      Hello Charles,
      The developers have stated that the French version is in development. We are hoping before the end of the year…keep checking back with us for updates, we are anxiously awaiting the release as well.
      -inov8

  2. Mary Georger October 27, 2011 at 3:48 pm #

    I agree, Proloquo2Go is setting the path for more effective special needs apps of its kind. I’m an editor at The Recapp, an app review website, and this 60 Minutes segment inspired our more recent Apps for Autism article. We also reviewed other (less expensive) apps that are beneficial to those with autism, communications disorders and other special needs. I’m truly excited that this news segment has created such a stir. It will be interesting to see what apps will be developed in the future for similar special needs.

    Mary Georger
    editor, The Recapp
    The Recapp
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  3. Dean Junk December 26, 2011 at 11:18 pm #

    You really need to checkout the Gabby application written by enabledsoftware. The link to the site is http://www.enabledsoftware.net.

  4. Patty February 28, 2012 at 10:04 am #

    I too agree with the comment posted by Dean Junk – We have begun using the app Gabby with our 10 year old son and are amazed at how easy this is to use and customize. The price is what initially got our attention- this is affordable for Every Child.

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