Teaching Young Children with Multiple Disabilities and Visual Impairments to Initiate Requests Using the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) and Tangible Symbols

Mentor Name:
Sarah Ivy

Mentor Position:
Associate Professor

Special Education



Project Description:

This study will examine the efficacy of teaching children with multiple disabilities and visual impairments (MD/VI) to initiate requests using the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) and tangible symbols. PECS is an intervention often used with children with autism and communication delays that typically relies heavily on visual components. However, given the visual impairments of participants in this study, symbols that can be accessed through touch (rather than visual components) will be used.

Opportunity Type:

Volunteer; Prepare a UROP proposal; Write an Honors Thesis or Senior Thesis; Earn independent study credit

Student Role:

Students will assist the researcher in (a) implementing the intervention, (b) collecting video samples, and (c) collecting data.

Student Benefits:

Students will develop research skills by actively engaging in an applied study with a team of researchers (one professor, one associate professor, one doctoral student)

Project Duration:

The project will be implemented from approximately 1/15/2022 to 5/1/2022. It is estimated that students will work approximately 15 hours per week on the project.

Minimum Requirements:

The research will be conducted in K-12 schools along the Wasatch front during school hours. The student will need to drive their own vehicle to the selected schools.