SPH204 Diversity and Communication (8)


This subject will introduce students to the diverse ways people communicate in our community - including indigenous and community languages, Auslan, AAC and multi-modal communication. There will be opportunities to develop skills in interdisciplinary practice, signing, and the development of low-tech and electronic multi-modal communication resources. This subject will provide an introduction to the disability sector, and an opportunity to explore the range of ways that communication issues can impact on activity and participation for people with diverse abilities and needs. 

+ Subject Availability Modes and Location

Session 2
InternalAlbury-Wodonga Campus
Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: SPH204
Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject information

Duration Grading System School:
One sessionHD/FLSchool of Community Health

Assumed Knowledge

Theories of language development

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to demonstrate use of the ICF for assessment and planning of interventions for people with complex communication needs
  • be able to identify the key speech, language and communication issues associated with developmental and acquired impairments, that might result in a person needing to enhance multi-modal elements of communication and/or AAC systems to support communication;
  • Be able to provide detailed description, in both lay and technical language, of various modes of communication used in everyday life and to incorporate various non-verbal modes into simple multi-modal educational resources
  • Be able to reflect on their own attitudes to communication impairment and to the processes involved in supporting long-term change in participation for people with complex communication needs.
  • Be able to demonstrate knowledge of the theories and processes that underpin the development of AAC systems, by producing low-tech resources for real-life contexts.
  • Be able to demonstrate beginning skills in interacting with people with diverse communication skills and support needs
  • Be able to demonstrate a practical awareness of inter-disciplinary approaches to disability service provision.


The subject will cover the following topics:
  • Using the ICF to develop detailed understanding of different types of impairments (physical, sensory,cognitive, intellectual)
  • Theory and practice in Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC)
  • Conducting needs assessments through consultation and collaboration with clients and significant others.
  • Working with communication partners
  • Multi-Modal Communication
  • Key Word Signing
  • Inter-professional practice
  • Global perspectives on disability


The information contained in the 2016 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: 06 September 2016. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.