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A Project GATORSS: Social Skills Assessment and Intervention for Young Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders Maureen A. Conroy, Ph.D., Jennifer M. Asmus,

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Presentation on theme: "A Project GATORSS: Social Skills Assessment and Intervention for Young Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders Maureen A. Conroy, Ph.D., Jennifer M. Asmus,"— Presentation transcript:

1 A Project GATORSS: Social Skills Assessment and Intervention for Young Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders Maureen A. Conroy, Ph.D., Jennifer M. Asmus, Ph.D. & Crystal N. Ladwig, Ph.D., College of Education at the University of Florida Research Questions Phase 3 Treatment Losardo & Notari-Syverson, 2001 Alan’s Snapshot Social Skills Data Obtained By Assessment Type Examine the use of experimental analysis techniques for assessing prosocial and problem social behaviors in young children (ages 18 mos - 5 years old) with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Examine the influence of setting events/establishing operations, including the influence of peers, on prosocial and problem social behaviors. Examine the effectiveness of interventions based on the outcomes of experimental analyses on the prosocial and problem social behaviors. Examine the robustness and the generality of the results obtained from descriptive assessments and experimental analyses through comparisons across natural settings or care providers. Phase 1 Descriptive Assessment Process Social Skills Interview (SSI) – Structured interview completed with the classroom teacher used to assess children’s peer-related social behaviors, identify possible contextual factors that are more likely to facilitate social interactions with peers, and to evaluate past social skills interventions. Social Skills Screening Tool (SSS) – 10-minute interval direct observational tool used to obtain quantitative information about the frequency of children’s social behaviors during social activities (e.g., free play, centers, etc.). Observers record any occurrence of social initiations, responses, or interactions in 10-second intervals for a total of 10 minutes across 3-5 social activities. Snapshot Assessment Tool (SAT) – Event recording tool used to assess the appropriateness and context of social behaviors, hypothesize functions of social behaviors, and examine the impact of classroom characteristics on social behaviors during social activities. Observers document the type and form of behavior, the context and appropriateness of behavior, reciprocity of exchange, perceived goals of behavior, and actual outcomes each time a social behavior is observed for a total of minutes across a minimum of 2 social activities. Direct Observations (DO) – 5-7 hours of direct, sequential recording of behaviors and contextual factors in naturally occurring social situations. Phase 2 Functional and Structural Analyses For more information, contact Project GATORSS at: Functional Analysis (FA) Purpose: To extend current FA methodology to the assessment of prosocial and socially withdrawn and inappropriate behaviors 5 minute conditions with peers providing contingent attention or escape from social demands for displays of targeted social behaviors Conditions: ignore, tangible, attention, escape, free play (modification of procedures outlined by Iwata et al., 1982/1994) Structural Analysis (SA) Purpose: To identify effects of specific contextual factors on appropriate and problem social behaviors 5 minute conditions with peers conducted that provide noncontingent presentation of pre-selected antecedent variables (Carr & Durrand, 1985; Peck et al., 1997). Conditions: play format, group size, activities/location, level of adult engagement, restricted interests Develop, implement, and evaluate interventions linked to outcomes of descriptive and experimental analyses. Interventions include environmental arrangement and direct instruction of target child regarding appropriate social behaviors linked with peer training. Collaborate with early childhood providers to develop interventions targeted to increase prosocial behaviors and decrease withdrawn and inappropriate social behaviors in natural settings. Collaborate with and provide technical assistance to early childhood providers to assist in the implementation of interventions. Evaluate the effectiveness of interventions by assessing the relative increase in appropriate social behaviors and/or decrease in problem social behaviors. Participants and Settings 18 young children (18 mo – 5 years old) with ASD over 3 years Social behavior deficits (withdrawn) and/or excesses (inappropriate) Natural setting (e.g., general/special education preschool, kindergarten) SSISSSSATDOFA/SA GregAdult engaged Snack & blocks Peer attention & tangible Small group Games w/Rules Child directed FA – Tangible (appropriate); SA – Access to restricted interest ScottAdult engaged Adult directed Adult directed Manipulatives TangiblesAttention for initiations Tangible for responses Small groups Child directed FA – Tangible (inappropriate); Tangible & escape (Withdrawn) JeanPretend play Small groups Peers’ gender Adult engaged Pretend playTangiblesData being analyzed FA – Escape & tangible (inappropriate) SarahArt/sensoryPretend play Art/sensory Tangibles Cognitive Meals Large groups Data being analyzed Data currently being collected JamesAdult directed ManipulativesPeer attention & escape Data being analyzed Data not yet collected AlexTangibles Cognitive Outside play Preferred peer/adult Outside playTangiblesData not collected Data not colected


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