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Message pathways

In Voco Chat, users are supported to communicate using six message pathways. Each pathway, once selected, will begin a message in the chat writing area, and automatically take the user to the next grid in that pathway, where they can continue to build their message.

These pathways enable the user to communicate for many different reasons, starting with why they are communicating, and building on that message as they are guided through the grid set.

Image shows the 6 message pathway options in Voco Chat.

“Something is wrong”

Getting help and telling someone when you have a problem

Image shows 'Something is wrong' Speak & jump cell

The first message pathway is designed to support users to get help and tell someone there is a problem. Located in the top left corner, it is easy and quick to find, as the problem may be urgent.

The next grid in the pathway offers the user a number of options of what might be wrong. Problems include something wrong with their body, such as pain or discomfort, feeling unwell, problems with their communication aid, or a problem with the conversation, such as someone not understanding what they have said or not giving them enough time to communicate. This pathway also provides users with a way to say they don’t want to do something, or to disclose that something bad has happened to them.

This image shows the next grid in the 'Something is wrong' pathway.

There is a second grid which has plenty of space to add reasons why something might be wrong, which may be specific to that user.

This image shows the second grid in the 'Something is wrong' pathway.

Example messasges

  • Something is wrong → with my body → something hurts → foot
  • Something is wrong → I feel → worried
  • Something is wrong → I need → a rest
  • Something is wrong → I don’t want to → I want to stop
  • Something is wrong → with talking → that’s not what I meant

“Can I tell you something?”

Sharing information

Image shows 'Can I tell you something' Speak & jump cell

The next message pathway supports users to share information in different ways, including telling someone their news, a joke or a story. Users can share information about themselves, their likes and dislikes, as well as talk about people, places or things. The first three cells in this grid allow the user to indicate whether they are talking about something in the past, present or future.

This image shows the grid that forms the next step of the 'Can I tell you something' message pathway.

The news, a story, about me, likes, and dislikes grids are all designed to be personalised.

Example messages

  • Can I tell you something → my news → at the weekend…
  • Can I tell you something → about me → I like to watch…
  • Can I tell you something → about a thing → vehicles → see → plane
  • Can I tell you something → it’s already happened → about a place → trip → zoo
  • Can I tell you something → a joke

“Can I ask you something?”

Finding out information

Image shows 'Can I ask you something' Speak & jump cell

This message pathway provides a way for users to ask questions and find out information. It contains a range of frequently asked questions, such as ‘who are you?’, ‘what is that?’ and ‘can I do it?’. The most common question words (e.g. who, what) are also available as single cells so users can create their own questions or direct a communication partner’s attention appropriately.

This image shows the grid that forms the next step of the 'Can I ask you something' message pathway.

There is a second grid, with further questions and question words, and jumps to more questions to ask someone about themselves, how they feel or what they want.

This image shows the second grid of the 'Can I tell you something' message pathway.

Example messages

  • Can I ask you something → what is that
  • Can I ask you something → can I do it
  • Can I ask you something → more → about you → what music do you like?
  • Can I ask you something → more → when are we going
  • Can I ask you something → about you → what’s your name?

“I want”

Asking for something

This image shows the jump cell 'I want'

This pathway can be used to ask for a range of things, from simply requesting an object or something to eat or drink, to requesting activities or personal care.

All of the cells on this grid take the user to grids which contain additional vocabulary, to encourage them to continue their message with more specific requests. For example, a user may say ‘I want’ + ‘to play something’. Whilst they could finish their message there, the next grid they are taken to will provide them with options of what they could play.

This image shows the next grid of the 'I want' message pathway.

Users can also request actions, people, places, or other things via this pathway, as well as selecting describing words to be more specific about the item they have requested, for example, to ask for a ‘red’ one or a ‘big’ one.

Many of the grids which are accessed via this pathway are chat grids (as previously discussed on page 13 – 14 ) with a yellow cell of highlighted vocabulary, and additional vocabulary for that activity or context.

Example messages

  • I want → to do something → baking
  • I want → something to drink → juice
  • I want → to go → buildings → swimming pool
  • I want → personal care → change clothes → take off → jumper
  • I want → someone → professionals → doctor

“I feel”

Sharing emotions

This image shows the jump cell 'I feel'

This pathway encourages users to label and share their emotions. This may be in response to someone asking how they are feeling, or as part of spontaneous communication.

This image shows the next grid of the 'I feel' message pathway.

A second grid contains additional emotions, and a jump to an area of Voco Chat designed to support users to talk about their mental health and wellbeing.

This image shows the second grid of the 'I feel' message pathway.

By saying ‘I’m not okay’ the user is taken to a grid with several options to help them to talk about what is worrying them, what they feel like and what they need help with. It also provides vocabulary to support users to report if something bad has happened or share something they are having a problem with.

Example messages

            The I’m not okay grid can also be accessed via My toolkit from the home grid.

            “I think”

            Giving an opinion

            This image shows the jump cell 'I think'

            This pathway supports users to give an opinion or a description, from simply saying ‘I like it’ or ‘I don’t like it’ to describing how something looks, feels, tastes or smells.

            High frequency or useful describing words such as ‘same’, ‘different’ and ‘broken’ can be accessed via the ‘it is’ and ‘it’s not’ jumps.

            There is also a link to a rating scales grid for users to rate anything from pain to how they are feeling about something.

            This image shows the next grid of the 'I think' message pathway.

            Example message


                      Last Revision: 15.02.2022