Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)


PECS was first established in the United States of America in 1992 by Andy Bondy and Lori Frost as a communication intervention for individuals with a range of communication difficulties. A further base was opened in the United Kingdom in 1998 to support development in neighbouring countries.



What is PECS?

PECS does not require expensive resources or materials. Resources and materials used are:

  • A small ring binder folder with shoulder strap
  • Folder inserts
  • Photograph or PECS symbol pictures depending on the individual’s needs
  • Velcro to keep pictures in the folder and keep exchanges simple

PECS begins by teaching individuals to give a photograph picture/symbol picture to an adult to request a motivating item. This exchange must be immediately honoured with the motivating item to build initiating and avoid prompt dependency. PECS further develops communication skills by teaching discrimination between pictures, building sentences, answer questions, comment and give their own views and opinions. These developments are categorized into six PECS levels which the individual develops over time building independence and communication between individuals.

PECS has been successful with many individuals with a variety of communication difficulties and across all ages. Some individuals that use PECS also develop speech or individuals may develop onto another device.

Research continues all over the world in the effectiveness of PECS as a communication system. Here you can find all of the latest research:



At Tettenhall Wood School

Once a referral has been made the individual is assessed to see if PECS is appropriate. After assessment PECS is then taught and implemented in school by all staff who have been trained by Pyramid UK. Outside agencies such as Speech and Language, respite and also in the individuals own home setting to enhance interactions between siblings, family and the community.

Support with PECS

Tettenhall Wood School offer full support to parents/carers to implement PECS at home.

  • Resources/materials are updated and given by the school when required
  • Trained staff can offer a variety of support to suit parent/carer needs to fully utilise in the home

Specialised support can be offered from Miss K Sidney and Mrs H Moore


Contact Details


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