Seminars in Speech and Language : Enhancing Communication and Social Interaction Skills of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their Communication Partners (Avril 2018)

jeudi 29 mars 2018

Le numéro d’avril 2018 de Seminars in Speech and Language est consacré à l’autisme :

Enhancing Communication and Social Interaction Skills of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their Communication Partners

1. Donaldson AL. Treatment in Autism Spectrum Disorder. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(2) : 101-2.

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2. Steinbrenner JRD. Fostering Communication in Elementary School Children on the Autism Spectrum Who Are Minimally Verbal. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(2) : 103-13.

Around 30% of elementary school students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are considered minimally verbal, yet there is limited research addressing the needs of this group of students. Several recent studies have demonstrated successful improvement of the communication skills of elementary school students with limited verbal skills. Additionally, there are focused intervention practices that are evidence based and may be useful in targeting communication skills for children with ASD who are minimally verbal. This article will review existing information about interventions to target communication skills in elementary school children with ASD who are minimally verbal, identify potential target skills, and provide case examples of how to embed communication interventions in elementary school classroom settings from a pilot intervention study.

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3. Rieth SR, Haine-Schlagel R, Burgeson M, Searcy K, Dickson KS, Stahmer AC. Integrating a Parent-Implemented Blend of Developmental and Behavioral Intervention Strategies into Speech-Language Treatment for Toddlers at Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(2) : 114-24.

Naturalistic developmental behavioral interventions include an explicit focus on coaching parents to use therapy techniques in daily routines and are considered best practice for young children with autism. Unfortunately, these approaches are not widely used in community settings, possibly due to the clinical expertise and training required. This article presents the work of the Bond, Regulate, Interact, Develop, Guide, Engage (BRIDGE Collaborative), a multidisciplinary group of service providers (including speech-language pathologists), parents, funding agency representatives, and researchers dedicated to improving the lives of young children with autism spectrum disorder and their families. The group selected and adapted a parent coaching naturalistic developmental behavioral intervention specifically for use with toddlers and their families for community implementation. Lessons learned from the implementation process include the importance of therapist background knowledge, the complexity of working with parents of young children, and needed supports for those working closely with parents, including specific engagement strategies and the incorporation of reflective practice.

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4. Hutchins TL, Prelock PA. Using Story-Based Interventions to Improve Episodic Memory in Autism Spectrum Disorder. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(2) : 125-43.

Episodic memory (EM) and scene construction are critical for organizing and understanding personally experienced events and for developing several aspects of social cognition including self-concept, identity, introspection, future thinking, counterfactual reasoning, theory of mind, self-regulation, flexible problem-solving, and socially adaptive behavior. This article challenges the reader to think differently about EM in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), as we expand our understanding of autobiographical memory that requires an ability to travel back in time and re-experience an event. The role of EM in cognitive and behavioral functioning for children with and without ASD is described. The value of story-based interventions such as Social Stories and Comic Strip Conversations for supporting EM is discussed with adaptations recommended to ensure a rich personal recall of an event. By focusing on EM and scene construction, there is potential for increasing the potency of story-based interventions for achieving maximum therapeutic impact.

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5. Whalon K. Enhancing the Reading Development of Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(2) : 144-57.

Foundational to autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are difficulties developing joint attention, social reciprocity, and language/communication. These challenges place children with ASD at risk for future reading failure. Research suggests that many school-aged children with ASD will learn the decoding skills necessary to effectively read text, but will struggle with comprehension. Yet, the reading profiles of learners with ASD also show great heterogeneity, with some also unable to effectively decode new words. The range of challenges associated with ASD highlights the need for comprehensive literacy/reading instruction that addresses both code- and meaning-focused skills from the earliest grades. This article will provide an overview of effective interventions that support both the code- and meaning-focused skills of learners with ASD. Specific examples of effective instructional practices for learners with ASD will be shared.

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6. Timler GR. Let’s Talk : Review of Conversation Intervention Approaches for School-Aged Children and Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(2) : 158-65.

Conversation skills are an important intervention focus for verbally fluent school-aged children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Three sets of approaches for supporting conversation skills are reviewed. Pragmatic language approaches focus on teaching the verbal and nonverbal skills needed to initiate and maintain conversations including strategies for recognizing and repairing communication breakdowns. Social skill approaches focus on similar conversation behaviors, but these behaviors are usually taught for use within specific social tasks such as entering peer groups, maintaining interactions, and resolving conflicts. Peer-focused approaches enlist the support of peers through direct teaching of strategies to engage and maintain conversations with students with ASD (i.e., peer-mediated interventions) or through environmental arrangement strategies to promote interactions between students with and without ASD (i.e., peer networks). Conversation interventions that incorporate strategies from all three sets of approaches are most likely to promote optimal outcomes. These outcomes include opportunities for students with ASD to develop and refine conversation skills with classmates who are more open to interactions with peers of differing abilities.

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7. Donaldson AL, Nolfo M, Montejano M. Relationships, Friendships, and Successful Social Communication : Addressing Disability. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(02) : 166-77.

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8. Rodda A, Estes A. Beyond Social Skills : Supporting Peer Relationships and Friendships for School-Aged Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Semin Speech Lang. 2018 ; 39(2) : 178-94.

Social impairments are the sine qua non of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, children with ASD are capable of forming reciprocal friendships and many people with ASD have a strong desire for friends. Developing and maintaining friendships is associated with many important outcomes, including improved quality of life, mental health, and academic achievement. Children with ASD often attend groups to improve social skills, but strategies for building and maintaining friendships are not consistently addressed or measured following intervention. In this article, our objective is to build an understanding of peer relationships and friendships in school-aged children with ASD and how to best support them. In this article, we describe characteristics of peer relationships and friendships for children with ASD. We discuss current research findings on intervention to improve social skills, peer relationships, and friendships in school-aged children with ASD. Finally, we give suggestions for clinical practice and future research.

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