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A personalizable access technology for children with cerebral palsy and complex communication needs (Phase 3)


Access technologies can help people with severe motor impairments communicate. However, many of the available devices have limited customization potential. We have created an access technology which users will be able to personalize at home to recognize their specific vocalizations, keywords and/or facial movements. We want to evaluate the impact of this new access technology.

Call to action

Do you have a child with cerebral palsy and complex communication needs? Consider participating in a research study about a novel access technology personalizable at home.

Who can participate

We are looking for children who are between 6 and 18 years old, have cerebral palsy (GMFCS level II-V, MACS level II-V, VSS level II-III-IV), do not have medically refractory epilepsy and/or seizures triggered by light stimulus, have a stable comfortable seating position, are able to reliably indicate yes/no, have sufficient vision/hearing to identify prompts on a screen, have an existing access technology used at least 3 times/week for communication or writing, have access at home to a desktop/laptop/tablet with Tobii Communicator or The Grid communication/writing software installed, and experience with these communication programs.

Funding agency

Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation

What's involved

We will provide participants with a personalizable access technology software and give them up to 5 weeks to personalize it at home, with the help of their family, by recording and annotating audio/video data while they perform simple activation tasks (e.g., blinking, opening/closing mouth, saying “next” and “go” or “iiiiih”). Participants will also be asked to play a custom video game to test the performance of the personalized access technology software.

Participants will then be asked to use the personalized access technology software for communication or writing for 6 weeks.

We will ask participants to fill questionnaires about appropriateness, usability, and contextual impact of the personalized technology right after customization of the technology, and then again after 3 and 6 weeks.


Interested in participating

If you are interested in participating in this study or have additional questions, please contact Evan Mitton at or 416-425-6220 x6349 with your interest, and they will get back to your shortly. Contacting us does not obligate you or your child to participate in the study.

Additional information

eREB 0288

The Switch-App: A novel and versatile home-based approach to personalized access technology for children with cerebral palsy and complex communication needs - Phase 3

Version date: 2023-11-23

Learn more about this study