LEARNING IN SPECIAL EDUCATION: COMMUNICATIVE COOPERATION IN AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER
Universidad de Valladolid (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2015 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Conference name: 8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2015
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:The present paper deals with the results of a training programme concerned with a number of skills that are instrumental in attaining efficient communication and which individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have problems in developing: these skills involve “comparison” (quality of uttered messages), “perspective-taking” (the ability to adapt communication to the interlocutor’s perspective), and “self-evaluation” (control of communication) —all within the variable known as “non-adapted regulations” in the ecological referential communication paradigm.
The study sample consisted of two groups: one including 10 people with Autism Spectrum Disorders and a second one formed by 10 typically developing individuals. Both groups were equivalent in terms of number of subjects, gender, chronological age and verbal mental age. Both took part in a four-week referential communication training programme.
The effects of training have been evaluated by means of Ecological-Referential Communication Tasks performed at three specific points in time: Pre-Test, Post-Test and during a generalization or transfer trial.
The group with ASD subjects shows a significant improvement in “non-adapted regulations to the conversational partner” (perspective-taking skills), both in the post-test phase and in the transfer trial. By comparison with the group of typically developing subjects, the initial communicative difficulties experienced by individuals with ASD within this variable decrease during the post-test phase to levels presented by the group of typically developing subjects.
The theoretical and practical implications of these results are put forward and discussed in this paper, and so is the convenience of including this type of training programmes in evaluations and therapy interventions targeted at subjects with ASD.
Keywords: Special Education, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Referential Communication, Training Programme, Evaluation, Intervention.