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Supporting Children and Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)

There are approximately 1500 students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in central Iowa, and many more students with characteristics of ASD. Heartland AEA special education staff members are dedicated to providing a variety of services to help ensure the success of these unique learners.

Who provides services?

Heartland AEA’s Challenging Behavior and Autism Team (CBAT), nine of whom are Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA), is comprised of professionals who have advanced training and expertise in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), including a variety of evidence-based practices. The CBAT is comprised of early childhood consultants, special education consultants, school psychologists, school social workers and speech-language pathologists.

Additionally, 60 Heartland AEA professional staff have the State of Iowa’s Autism Resource Teams (ART) designation. These professionals have additional training and experience in ABA. Within the next 3-5 years, Heartland AEA has set a goal of having a minimum of 1-2 ART members per district AEA team.

What do they do?

  • Design specific assessments for each child
  • Assist in designing individualized intervention and instructional programs within IFSPs and IEPs
  • Identify appropriate evidence-based instructional and behavioral intervention strategies that will help the child learn
  • Monitor implementation of the IEP and interpret data to determine if instructional changes are needed
  • Provide training and ongoing support to teachers, associates, parents and other AEA special education staff about best practices

Speaking of training…

Below are links to some upcoming courses in Heartland AEA's Professional Development Catalog:

Effective Programming for Integrated Students on the Autism Spectrum (2 day)
Dates: April 1 & 2
Location: Ames AEA office
Activity Number: EL000192111502

Introduction to Video Modeling and Video Self-Modeling
Dates: April 1 & May 1
Location: Johnston REC
Activity Number: DL009992111502

Introduction to Video Modeling and Video Self-Modeling
Dates: April 1 & May 22
Location: Johnston REC
Activity Number: DL009992111503

Be on the lookout for these courses coming in 2015-2016

  • Direct Instruction for Students with Autism and Developmental Disabilities
  • Effective Programming for Integrated Students on the Autism Spectrum
  • Introduction to Assessment and Intervention Strategies to Promote Social Interaction Skills
  • Introduction to Functional Communication Training
  • Introduction to Video Modeling and Video Self-Modeling
  • Survey of Applied Behavior Analysis: Principles and Applications (Sessions 1-3)
  • Teaching Functional Communication through Picture Exchange

Links to quality online resources

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