AAC 2023

About the conference

5th International Conference on Augmentative and Alternative Communication – AAC 2023 is organised by “ASSIST – Assistive Technologies” Foundation 

with the support by UNICEF – BulgariaMinistry of Education and Science, ISAAC – International Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication

The conference presents  contemporary approaches and technologies for children and adults with communication difficulties – cerebral palsy, autism, multiple disabilities, intellectual disabilities, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and others.

The talks present:

  • modern approaches, methods, and technologies for augmentative and alternative communication, given by leading experts.
  • the experience and best practices in working and teaching children with cerebral palsy, autism, multiple disabilities and others.
  • the personal experience of users of augmentative and alternative communication.

AAC2023 was held online, using Zoom. The participation was free of charge.

The working languages of the conference were Bulgarian and English. During the conference, there was simultaneous translation into English and Bulgarian.

AAC2023 topic: AAC beyond the AAC system

This year’s conference is dedicated to the topic of the entire process of needs assessment, introduction, adaptation and sustainable use of AAC.

The conference also includes a number of special sessions.

Special Session on Assessment and Policies in AAC in Central and Eastern Europe

Capacity for assistive technology and augmentative and alternative communication is in the process of being established in many Central and Eastern Europe countries. During this session, policies, assessment tools, and a global framework for capacity building for assistive technology and augmentative and alternative communication are presented.

Special Session on The role of AAC in the prevention of violence against people with communication impairments

Children and adults with complex communication needs are in heightened risk of abuse and violence. The session covers topics on using AAC to prevent violence and abuse, in the process of investigation and prosecution of acts of violence, and in testifying in court.

Special Session on the Bulgarian experience in AAC

A part of the conference this year is dedicated to sharing the successes and problems in the introduction and use of AAC in Bulgaria.


During the conference, talks were presented by 42 speakers from 12 countries.

6 official representatives took part in the conference (Representatives of the Bulgarian Parliament, Ombudsman of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ministry of Education and Science, State Agency for Child Protection, Bulgaria, UNICEF Bulgaria, ISAAC)

Recordings of some of the presentations are available on the conference website. 

Recordings of some of the other presentations are made available only to conference participants.


The conference provoked a great interest in Bulgaria and abroad – 1035 participants from 45 countries took part in the conference.

The largest number of participants came from Bulgaria (581), Lithuania (86), Romania (82), Ukraine (59).


We received feedback about the conference from 425 participants.

99% of the respondents would participate in the next conference on a similar topic, and 99.5% would recommend the conference to colleagues or friends.

The overall rating of the conference is an excellent one. The average rating is 4.7 on a scale of 1 (unsatisfactory) to 5 (excellent).

The rating for both the content of the talks and the organization of the conference are also excellent.

Thanks and Looking Forward

Thanks to all the speakers who shared their experiences and knowledge. Thanks to you, the conference was so interesting and useful!

We thank all the organizations and institutions that supported the conference – UNICEF Bulgaria, ISAAC International, Ministry of Education and Science, Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, State Agency for Child Protection, Ombudsman of the Republic of Bulgaria, Ministry of Education and Science, State Agency for Child Protection.

We also thank all the participants for their interest and for the positive feedback! This gives us the confidence and motivation to continue with this conference series.

We hope that the talks and the discussions will lead to a more successful introduction of AAC in Bulgaria and to the possibility of faster access to AAC by all children and adults with communication needs.

See you soon!

“ASSIST – Assistive Technologies” Foundation