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Coach to Communicate (C2C) (TX UCEDD)

Dr. Jennifer Ganz is the project director for the Coach To Communicate project which provides a webinar and face-to-face/online individual parent coaching sessions at no cost for parents, caregivers, teachers, and service providers of children with autism spectrum disorder. Participants will be instructed in how to improve the communication skills of their own children. This project serves Texas parents, caregivers, teachers, or service providers who have a child up to age 22 with autism spectrum disorder or similar characteristics and who need instruction in communication skills. Coach to Communicate group photo



TIPS 4 Kids (Missouri LEND) Hosts Successful Leadership Project Poster Session

TIPS 4 Kids, Missouri's LEND, hosted a poster session of trainee's yearlong leadership projects. Approximately 100 students, faculty, community stakeholders, and practitioners attended. Rep. Sara Walsh, of the Missouri House of Representatives, was also in attendance, and we look forward to future collaboration with her and other members of the Missouri House of Representatives.



MCDD Public Health Trainee Receives a Distinguished Essay Award (MD UCEDD)

Meredith Nicholson, a trainee at the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD) at Kennedy Krieger Institute, is the 2018 recipient of the MSPH Distinguished Essay Award through The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Department of Population, Family & Reproductive Health. Her essay is titled "Mental Health Disparities of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, and Asexual (LGBTQA) Autistic Adults Compared to Heterosexual & Cisgender Autistic Adults" and was selected for the award out of all submitted master's essays in the department.



MNLEND Fellow Leads Creation of Sensory Tents in the Minneapolis Parks

Summer is coming and city parks will soon be filled with crowds, noisy events, excited children, food, and family pets. For most people, this is a celebration of warm weather and a chance to reconnect with family and friends in the great outdoors. But Elise Niedermeier (far right in photograph), a Fellow in ICI's Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (MNLEND) program, and the ADA Coordinator for the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB), knows that for some people -- such as children with autism -- all this stimulation can become sensory overload.

Quidditch is a combination of flag football, dodgeball, rugby, basketball, and a little bit of soccer.


USM Institute for Disability Studies Launches Inclusive Quidditch Game (MS UCEDD)

Readers who enjoy fantasy books or movies will be familiar with the Harry Potter series. Harry Potter fans are familiar with the sport of Quidditch. Yes, it's the sport played on brooms in which players throw the Quaffle and attempt to catch the tiny, golden Snitch to end the game.|



Changes in Intrinsic Local Connectivity After Reading Intervention in Children with Autism

Most of the existing behavioral and cognitive intervention programs in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) have not been tested at the neurobiological level, thus falling short of finding quantifiable neurobiological changes underlying behavioral improvement.



Changes in Intrinsic Local Connectivity After Reading Intervention in Children with Autism

Most of the existing behavioral and cognitive intervention programs in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) have not been tested at the neurobiological level, thus falling short of finding quantifiable neurobiological changes underlying behavioral improvement.



Review of Autism Screeners for Very Young Children with or at Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorders

Screening for autism spectrum disorders (ASD) at 18 and 24 months has been a standard American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation since 2007. However, research over the last two decades about the early emergence of autism symptoms has prompted a number of researchers and clinicians to create screening instruments and strategies for earlier ages.



Language Barriers Impact Access to Services for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

Racial and ethnic disparities in accessing health care have been described in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In a retrospective chart review of 152 children with ASD, children of parents whose primary language was English were significantly more likely to have both social skills and communication goals within their individualized education plan (IEP) compared to children of parents whose primary language was not English.



Transitioning Together: A Multi-family Group Psychoeducation Program for Adolescents with ASD and Their Parents (WI UCEDD/LEND)

Currently there are few evidence-based programs available for families of individuals with ASD during the transition to adulthood. The present study provided a preliminary evaluation of a multi-family group psychoeducation intervention using a randomized waitlist control design (n = 41). Families in the intervention condition participated in Transitioning Together, an 8-week program designed to reduce family distress and improve social functioning for adolescents.



Screening for Autism with the SRS and SCQ: Variations across Demographic, Developmental and Behavioral Factors in Preschool Children.

The Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ) and the Social Responsiveness Scales (SRS) are commonly used screeners for autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Data from the Study to Explore Early Development were used to examine variations in the performance of these instruments by child characteristics and family demographics.



Android Robot-Mediated Mock Job Interview Sessions for Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot Study

The feasibility and preliminary efficacy of an android robot-mediated mock job interview training in terms of both bolstering self-confidence and reducing biological levels of stress in comparison to a psycho-educational approach human interview was assessed in a randomized study.Young adults with ASD were randomized to participate either in a mock job interview training with our android robot system or a self-paced review of materials about job-interviewing skills.



Do Early Caregiver Concerns Differentiate Girls with Autism Spectrum Disorders?

Given that early caregiver concerns may be different for children who go on to receive a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder versus another developmental disability, early caregiver concerns may differ for girls. Using a community-based sample of children (n = 241), we examined the extent to which gender differences may be related to caregiver concerns prior to a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder or other developmental disability.



Mid-life Social Outcomes for a Population-based Sample of Adults with ASD

Adults with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) fall short of social outcomes of non‐ASD peers in mid‐life, as documented by currently published research. The aim of the current study was to extend what is known about social functioning, employment, independent living, and use of social services by examining details of the current life status for a population‐based sample of adults with ASD (mean age = 35.5 years, range = 22.2�51.4). We collected outcome data via direct assessment and informant report for 169 individuals. Three‐fourths of the sample had cognitive abilities in the intellectually disabled range. Social functioning outcomes, as a single measure, mirror those reported previously for other samples, including samples with a high proportion of individuals with normal range intellectual abilities, with 20% achieving the most independent outcomes and 46% requiring high levels of support across most life areas. Participant subgroups who achieved maximal outcomes represented a range of social and intellectual abilities for several outcome metrics. Participants used high levels of public and private supports, yet specific areas of clear, unmet need were also identified.



SPARK: A US Cohort of 50,000 Families to Accelerate Autism Research

The Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI) has launched, a dynamic platform that is engaging thousands of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and connecting them to researchers. By making all data accessible, SPARK seeks to increase our understanding of ASD and accelerate new supports and treatments for ASD.

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