Date of Thesis

2011

Thesis Type

Masters Thesis

First Advisor

Candice Stefanou

Abstract

Active participation is as essential a skill to children with autism as it is for children without autism, as children are expected to engage in these skills both in and outside the classroom. Without participation skills, children are at a disadvantage when it comes to school and other settings, such as extracurricular activities and the workforce. Recent research has shown that there are interventions available that aim to improve the social skills of children in the home and in the school. These interventions can be delivered in varying forms with the primary caregiver as the interventionist, the specialist as the interventionist, and naturalistic interventions. The purpose of this study was to investigate one of the naturalistic interventions, the Competent Learner Model, and determine its effects on the participation and social skills of students with autism. Three middle school male students diagnosed with autism from a rural northeast middle school participated in the study. They were assessed using the Competent Learner Repertoire Assessments of the Competent Learner Model and the adaptive measures of the Vineland-II and ABAS-II. The results showed improvement for one of the three students and little to no improvement for the other two students.

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