Training the Trainers: How to Teach the Minspeak Language System


December 11-13, 2018, Pittsburgh


This focus of this 2.5 day seminar will be to provide learners with a theoretical and practical foundation for the use of core vocabulary as it pertains to language and vocabulary development for augmented communicators as well as how to integrate the use of core vocabulary as a primary strategy for targeting communication and language in home and academic settings.  Our guest speaker will focus on how to teach the Minspeak language system using adult learning strategies at the pre-service and in-service level. Although this encompasses a variety of stakeholders including students, faculty, colleagues and parents; the underlying concepts and methods are inter-related.  Resources for the development of teaching strategies and materials, as well as assessment tools for individuals using the Minspeak language system will be demonstrated.  This presentation will further discuss the possibility of developing a mentorship program for collaboration between special and general education teachers as well as speech-language therapists, paraprofessionals and parents.  In the present day of ever changing technology it is important to bridge distance between providers and their clients as well as other professionals or parents who support the client.  Principles incorporating Telepractice (or TeleMinspeak) will be used to provide information to bridge this gap.   


Bruce Baker, PhD

Meher Banajee, PhD, CCC-SLP

Deborah Laurent Witkowksi, MA, CCC-SLP

Tracy M. Kovach, PhD, CCC-SLP

Russell Cross

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explain why core vocabulary, not extended vocabulary, should be emphasized in AAC intervention.
  2. Describe the relationship between the use of core vocabulary and normal language development.
  3. Discuss strategies for teaching communication partner strategies to those who work with individuals who use AAC.
  4. Discuss the impact of motor automaticity in the successful use of AAC devices.
  5. Discuss adult learning principles and how they can be used to teach different paradigms within Minspeak.
  6. Describe how to generalize and collaborate with other professionals, therapists and parents who support individuals who use AAC in the community.
  7. Discuss how to apply the principle of Telepractice to the teaching of Minspeak paradigms.
  8. Identify two key differences between referential and descriptive teaching strategies.
  9. Discuss strategies that enable students who use AAC to demonstrate learning to demonstrate learning within the components of Bloom’s Taxonomy.


This activity is offered for up to 1.9 CEUs (18.5 hours of instruction). To register for CEUs:
  1. Download, and complete the following forms.
  2. Save the files names: 181213_SCS_Lastname_Firstname
  3. Send both files to
  4. Upon completion of the two forms and passing the quiz, a CEU certificate will be sent 

Note: If any difficulty is encountered in using this form, write to to request an alternative file format.