Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


35th Annual Convention; Phoenix, AZ; 2009

Workshop Details

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Workshop #W7
CE Offered: BACB
Developing Successful Programs to Meet the Needs of Adolescents and Adults with ASD
Friday, May 22, 2009
10:00 AM–5:00 PM
North 129 B
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
CE Instructor: Steve Woolf, Ph.D.
FRANK R. CICERO (Eden II Programs), Peter F. Gerhardt (Organization for Autism Research), Joanne Gerenser (Eden II Programs), Nicole Weidenbaum (Nassau-Suffolk Services for Autism)
Description: There has been considerable research done in the past twenty years in the area of autism and related disorders. We have learned a great deal about the genetics and neurobiology of autism and made great strides in early identification and intervention. Clinical research in speech and language, social skills, and behavior problems has resulted in a much better understanding of the complex nature of autism. The research clearly supports the use of applied behavior analysis in the treatment and education of learners with autism. One problem, however, is that very little of this research has included adults with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). While many of the findings with children with autism can be relevant in our work with adults, there remain significant gaps in the literature that unfortunately leave many more questions than answers. The lack of available literature to guide service providers in their work with adults with autism is particularly problematic today. The dramatic increase in the incidence with autism began almost 15 years ago and we are just now beginning to see this impact in the field of adult services. Many of the schools that opened in the past decade to meet the demands of parents who wanted good behavioral education programs are now facing the real challenge of how to address the needs of these learners as they become adolescents and adults. Still other programs that have been providing adult services for years to other populations are now being asked to expand their programs and accept learners with ASD. This workshop will address key aspects of developing an effective program for adolescents and adults with autism. Specifically the workshop will review the available literature in the areas of employment, recreation and leisure skills, sexuality, speech and language, promoting independence, community integration, and quality of life. In addition, assessment and programming to address each of these areas will be presented. Video tapes of program implementation as well as other relevant visual supports will be incorporated within the workshop. The workshop’s primary focus will be on adolescents and adults with autism who continue to demonstrate significant challenges and limitations. The essential components needed to specifically address individuals with ASD will be highlighted. In addition, the important modifications and adaptations that are necessary to meet the needs of individuals with ASD as they grow older will be presented.
Learning Objectives: Participants will be able to: 1. Discuss the relevant literature relating to services and treatments of adults with ASD 2. Identify key components of an effective program to meet the needs of adolescents and adults with ASD 3. Describe programming to address employment, secuality, recreation and leisure, as well as other key areas in the lives of adolescents and adults with ASD 4. Describe strategies for promoting independence and community access for adults with ASD
Activities: Participants will participate in lecture and group discussion as well as view videos of different aspects of service delivery for adolescents and adults with ASD. Participants will review data sheets, program forms, assessment materials and other program materials used within a behavioral program for adolescents and adults with ASD.
Audience: Service providers, program administrators, behavior analysts, parents of adolescents and adults with ASD
Content Area: Practice
Instruction Level: Basic



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