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Phrase Auditory Scanning COmmunicator – AAC App for iOS and the Web

pasco is a development project by the Ace Centre to create a AAC app to support people who require auditory scanning only. This may be with one or several Text to Speech (TTS) languages or recorded speech. The app supports auditory cues in a headphone and main speech out of the main speaker of a device. Currently only these features are supported in iOS – other platforms are due to be supported in the future.

So what is pasco?

pasco is designed for a specific need and is a development project led by Ace Centre. Its primary purpose is an AAC solution for individuals who need an auditory scanning system and who possibly require multi-lingual support. We felt a system that would work on a range of platforms would be useful so the software is web-based, however it can be  specially created to work off-line on iOS, Windows or Android. In the first phase of this work, we focused on iOS mainly because the individual client we are working with has an iPhone.

What pasco will do:

  • Have an auditory cue and main voice, these can be different voices
  • The cue and main voices can be recorded messages rather than text-to-speech
  • The cue and main voices  can be split between a wired headphone and the internal speaker of the iPhone
  • Be able to spell using purely auditory scanning – speaking out each letter as it is written and then speaking out the whole word on a space or finish command
  • The language can be created and edited  using a simple text file – where each tree is just an indented list of words or phrases
  • Support one switch scanning
  • Support direct access, so that a communication partner can use it and/or so that clients who are able to make small movements are able to use it.

Try out the app on an Apple iOS device (iPhone or iPad) by downloading the free app here. The web version can be trialled at . Please note that the different audio for a headphone and device speaker is only available in the iOS app.

Learn about how we created this resource


At Ace Centre we meet a number of clients where traditional AAC solutions aren’t suitable. Here are some examples Said is a 45-year-old man who lives at home with his wife. Said and his wife are Kurdish and have lived in the UK for 10 years..  Said speaks and understands English, his  wife has limited…

Read the full article

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