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What is picture exchange communication system?


Individuals who have a diagnosis within the autism spectrum of disorders typically have great difficulty with communication. They have trouble processing language and they have trouble using language to express wants and needs. On the other hand, autistic individuals are very visual. The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) is an intricate teaching tool that uses pictures to help individual with autism or other communicative disorders communicate. The pictures used in PECS are commonly printed and laminated on two-inch by two-inch cards. This teaching tool is very helpful as a means of communication. The process of using PECS is a little complex. There are six deliberate steps that this treatment for autism uses in order to help the child understand the concept behind the pictures. The six phases of PECS are systematic. As with many of the treatments for autism, this approach uses small steps to reach a specific goal and each phase must be presented in order to maximize the benefits of the program. As the child masters one phase he is introduced to the next successive step. Using pictures to facilitate communication has yielded great success in the treatment for autism and related pervasive developmental disorders. The ability to communicate effectively is one of the major obstacles that individuals with autism face.



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