This thesis aims to determine the impact that Augmentative and Alternative Communication
(AAC) devices have on social interactions, and then improves the AAC
user experience through a user focus design process. AAC devices enable people
who cannot speak to communicate with others. Unfortunately, they are tedious to
use and make social interaction a dissatisfying experience. The thesis consists of
three main studies. The first study focus on gathering information on behaviors of
communicative partners, specifically gaze behaviors, of AAC users and how those
behaviors impact the users. The second study takes a form of a focus group with
people who are experienced with AAC devices. The main discussions on the focus
group are to gather ideas about daily interactions of actual AAC users, and brainstorm
design ideas for technologies that can improve their interactions with others.
Finally, the last study aims to get feedback on prototypes created from ideas in
the second study.