Sounding Board App Review

As more of my student’s with visual impairments with multiple disabilities get older and enter into the world that requires them to use a multi-modal communication system to self-advocate and get their needs met. That means they might use a combination of verbal, text or pictures to self-advocate their wants and needs.

As my student’s explore their communication system, we see an increased need for them to have easy to use and access AAC apps on their assistive technology in order to access their world and social connections at school, work and home.

In order to meet this need a few of my students have been experimenting with Sounding Board by Ablenet to see if it is accessible to kids that are legally blind and have quite a bit of functional vision.

Image: Example board with 6 images and associated text.

Screenshot of Sounding Board with 6 images and associated text: Thank you, I am sorry, You're Nice! What is Your Name? I'm glad you came, Bless you!

Accessing Pre-Made Boards

One of the things I love about this AAC App the most is they there are pre-made boards with high contrast photos you, your students or teacher can access on topics such as food, social needs, grocery store, etc. 

Of course, you can always modify these boards and create your own photos that meet you or your student’s visual needs.

Screenshot of Preloaded Board categories: Clarification, Control, Emergency Help, Entertainment, Expressions, Leisure Entertainment, Money, My Emergency Info, Reading, Shopping, Shopping List, Social, Workplace, and Yes/No.So

Visual Access

This app is most accessible to students with a high visual perception skills and lots of functional vision.

The photos are simple in presentation and are high contrast but would require a generalized understanding of how to read many of the photos and illustrations 

Pros

  • The app is easily accessible and comes ready to use with little maintenance
  • It has auditory feedback on the pre-made and customized AAC boards
  • Board can be customizable to meet visual needs of other users

Cons

  • It would be good to be able to customize the size of the icons on each board