International Meeting for Autism Research (London, May 15-17, 2008): IMPACT OF AUTISM INTERVENTION INSTRUCTION ON TEACHER PRACTICE


Saturday, May 17, 2008
Champagne Terrace/Bordeaux (Novotel London West)
9:30 AM
L. H. Sullivan , Schol of Education, University of California, Davis, Davis, CA
A. M. Mastergeorge , Human Development and Family Studies, M.I.N.D. Institute, University of California at Davis, Davis, CA
K. Jennifer , School of Education, University of California, Davis, Davis, CA
P. Schetter , Autism and Behavior Training Associates, Woodland, CA
Background: Classroom-based autism intervention programs are not commonly examined for fidelity of implementation. It is important to consider the impact these programs have on both classroom practice and student outcomes.
Objectives: This study examines an intervention program comprised of specific strategies and current research for teachers working with students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Data from self-competency ratings and knowledge of ASD were utilized to determine the effectiveness of the intervention. In-depth interviews were conducted with participants to understand how interventions are applied in classroom environments. Interviews examined the successes and challenges that arose during implementation of the ASD teaching principles in the classroom.
Methods: 162 teachers from five cohorts participated in the study. All participants had completed an intensive autism training course which covered best practices in ASD interventions, data collection techniques, understanding current research in the field, and applied behavioral analysis strategies. Data was collected in four areas (pre and post intervention): test scores, self-competency and knowledge ratings, demographic data, and interviews.
Results: Analyses indicate significant increases in competency and knowledge following the training program. ANOVA analyses showed significant trends in years of experience teachers had working with ASD students as well as the types and number of strategies implemented in the classroom. Interviews revealed that increased knowledge of current research on ASD influenced the quality of interactions with students, parents and other educators. Prevalent challenges emerged in the areas of time, resources, levels of support, and data collection. In addition, themes for challenges and successes of classroom implementation were delineated.
Conclusions: Classroom intervention training has important implications for teachers of students with ASD. Increases in knowledge and competency in autism appears to augment teacher preparation in academic and social support areas, and contributes overall to the developmental and academic outcomes of ASD students.
See more of: Services Posters 2
See more of: Poster Presentations