Enhancing Communication for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) with Severe Communication and Behavioral Deficits Through Technology
It can be challenging to address severe communication deficits in students on the autism spectrum (ASD). My classroom is committed to providing a stimulating and creative environment and enhancing communication and motivation. Several students within the classroom have been identified as benefiting from an augmentative and alternative communication devices (AAC) and would benefit from the use of an iPad and a communication app. All students within the classroom have severe delays with his/her expressive language and behavioral deficits. Many of them have the inability to communicate their wants and needs. The inability to communicate has affected their ability to reach his/her full potential. iPads are a wonderful tool and will benefit children with communication and behavioral deficits greatly. The iPad can speak for the nonverbal, aid functional speech, soothe, educate, teach skills to, and entertain students; while providing motivation. The iPad and the communication application (app) will increase functional communication through verbal and cognitive tasks. Given the communication deficit level and the interest and motivation of our students with electronic devices, our students would benefit greatly from the use of iPads. The goal is to collect data in both academic and social settings in school to measure the expressive communication of students with ASD who were using an iPad, with the communication app and the level of prompting necessary to increase their requests, responses to questions, and social comments. Students with communication deficits will be taught to use the iPad with the communication application. They will be learning to initiate requests, respond to questions, and make social comments in both academic and social settings with a decreasing level of prompts.