According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 1 in 88 children have an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Autism is a pervasive disorder affecting multiple developmental outcomes (e.g., behavior, communication, cognitive skills). The heterogeneity of abilities poses a significant challenge for schools in determining how best to meet the needs of each child within the least restrictive environment. The research to date suggests that despite some mitigation in the severity of some symptoms associated with ASD as children grow older, significant limitations persist that can affect a range of outcomes.
The focus of this Center is a program of research to develop and evaluate a comprehensive, school-based intervention for secondary students with ASD. The purpose of the intervention is to improve cognitive, communicative, academic, social, behavioral, functional, or transition outcomes of secondary students with ASD. The Center's primary research will involve (1) developing a comprehensive school- and community-based treatment model for high school students with ASD, and (2) evaluating the efficacy of the intervention.
Across five years, researchers from six universities will collaborate with schools, businesses, families, and adolescents on the autism spectrum to build and study a high school program that supports optimal outcomes for students in high school and after graduation.
For more information, visit the CSESA Website
Erik Carter, Ph.D., (615) 322-8150