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The transition from adolescence to adulthood does not always receive as much attention as is needed. Often transition services are limited, leaving individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) without the level of preparation needed for “adulting”. Areas such as leisure skill development and vocational preference are often not fully addressed. We need to begin preparing individuals with ASD as early as possible for the future and place an emphasis on lifelong skills in our curriculum planning.

The overall goal is for the individual with ASD to have the best quality of life possible. There are a number of variables that…

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What does it mean to have an IQ? Well, IQ is an intelligence quotient and it is measured by a few specific intelligence tests. The most common tests that you may have heard of are the Stanford Binet and the WISC-R.

So, let’s talk about the numbers for a moment. If you receive a score between 90–110 then you would be considered to have average intelligence. It is possible to have an IQ that is above or below average. Most of the population has an average IQ, that’s why they call it average because it applies to most of us…

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Incidental teaching was first developed by researchers Hart & Risley in the late 1960s and into the 1970s (Risley, 1968; Hart & Risley, 1975). Incidental teaching is a child-directed teaching method in which the child’s interest leads the instruction. The adult (teacher or parent) uses the child’s interests to encourage language. The child is then provided a model to promote the elaboration of language. Incidental teaching can be used with children who have a language delay and it has been used effectively with children with autism to promote the use of communicative language.

How to Set Up Incidental Teaching Opportunities

For incidental teaching to be effective, the…

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Social Stories™ was originally developed by Carol Gray. Social Stories™ are stories that are written to help assist a student in a variety of social situations. Social Stories™ have been shown to be effective in improving social behavior in students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) across a variety of domain areas. Specifically, they have been shown to be effective in increasing appropriate social behavior while decreasing inappropriate behavior.

Developing a Story for a Student with ASD

It is important to develop a story that is very individualized. The story is written about the student and includes some information that makes…

This image shows two students sitting in a classroom with laptops in front of them.
This image shows two students sitting in a classroom with laptops in front of them.
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Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a research-based set of principles that together form a practical framework for using technology to maximize learning opportunities for every student (Rose & Meyer, 2002). This means that educators must think from the onset about all learners. So what does this mean for students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and how can UDL be used as a framework when educating students with ASD?

Understanding Universal Design for Learning

It is important to have a clear understanding of what UDL is first so that it can be determined how these principles can be used to better educate students with ASD…

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Let me tell you about Paul — he was diagnosed with autism at age 2 and by the age of 8, he had participated in over 10 fad treatments for autism. Treatments included auditory integration training, a gluten-free diet, a rotation diet, magnet therapy, intravenous immunoglobulin, secretin, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, prism glasses, and a number of medications. Why? Because a parent will do anything to help their child. The issue is that sometimes it takes away from other treatments, sometimes it is ineffective and sometimes it is actually harmful. …

Mary E. McDonald, Ph.D., BCBA

Professor @HofstraU, Researcher, Author, Autism Expert, Behavior Analyst, and Speaker

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