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AUCD - Research Symposium: Developmental Disabilities Research Across the Life Course

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Monday, November 1, 2010 1:15 pm - 4:30 pm

Location: Potomac Room III/IV

Session Description

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With presentations by IDDRC Core Faculty, the 2010 Research Symposium will highlight cutting-edge research into two areas of the lives of individuals with developmental disabilities.

Very Early Intervention for Autism
  • Rebecca Landa, PhD, CCC-SLP; Associate Professor, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Director, Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Kennedy Krieger Institute

Outcomes for children with autism are improved by early intervention. This presentation will focus on the impact of very early intervention on toddlers and their parents. The early intervention models will be described. Data on the short- and longer-term outcomes of the toddlers' cognitive, social, and language functioning will be presented. Parent change in use of engagement and communication-enhancing strategies and perceptions will be described. The importance of very early intervention will be discussed.

 Rebecca Landa
  Rebecca Landa,
The Transition to Adulthood for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders and Their Families
  • Julie Lounds Taylor, PhD; Assistant Professor, Pediatrics and Special Education; Vanderbilt Kennedy Center, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

The transition out of high school and into the adult service system for individuals with autism spectrum disorders is a time of immense change and uncertainty. This presentation will focus on three aspects of the transition process for these young adults and their families: (1) the impact of transitioning out of high school on autism symptoms and maladaptive behaviors; (2) the impact of high school exit on the mother-child relationship; and (3) employment and occupational activities for young adults with ASD in the years immediately following high school exit. Results suggest that youth from who do not have an intellectual disability, as well as those from lower income families and who have greater unmet service needs may be most at-risk during this time. Download presentation slides in pdf format.

Julie Taylor
  Julie Lounds Taylor, PhD
Aging Parents of Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: Profiles of Resilience and Vulnerability in Physical and Mental Health
  • Marsha Mailick Seltzer, PhD; Vaughan Bascom and Elizabeth M. Boggs Professor; Director, Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison

As they age, parents of adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) face multiple challenges, including continuing their caregiving and advocacy roles for their son or daughter with IDD, planning for the future, and dealing with the manifestations and consequences of their own aging. This presentation will examine profiles of resilience and vulnerability in midlife and old age among parents of adults with IDD, as well as factors that promote healthy aging. In addition, new data will be presented about physical and mental health risks that emerge during the early years of old age, relative to a comparison group of parents whose adult children do not have disabilities. These data reveal the toll taken by long-term parenting of adults with IDD, with implications drawn for public policy and future research. Download presentation slides in pdf format.

Marsha Seltzer
  Marsha Mailick Seltzer, PhD
Moderator and Discussant
  • Elisabeth Dykens, PhD; Professor of Psychology; Director, Vanderbilt Kennedy Center for Research on Human Development; Co-Director, Vanderbilt Kennedy Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities; Vanderbilt University

Elisabeth M. Dykens, Ph.D. is Professor of Psychology, Director of the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center for Research on Human Development, and Co-Director of the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities. Dykens' research examines psychopathology and areas of strength in persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities, especially those with genetic syndromes. Her studies focus on the development and correlates of psychopathology and behavioral problems in Prader-Willi syndrome, Williams syndrome, and Down syndrome. Dykens lives in Nashville, TN with her husband, Bob Hodapp, and children, Alexander and Benjamin.

Elizabeth Dykens

  Elisabeth M. Dykens, PhD