Autism Spectrum Disorder
For instance, an individual is unable to obtain sufficient education or does not have the opportunity to develop essential social skills during their adolescence, they may be less inclined to continue their education and may find it increasingly difficult to develop social bonds with other individuals as they age. Thus, it is absolute essential that every individual is given the opportunity to excel during their school years to increase their probability of future success.
Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are a family of increasingly prevalent disabilities that qualify an individual for special education services in the school under PILL-142, now called the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) (Bradley et al. , 2014). There have been multiple theories that have attempted to elucidate on the relative increase Of Cads in contemporary society; however, the underlying mechanism that makes one more predisposed to developing an SAD is currently unknown.
Even if an individual has been diagnosed with an SAD, they should be given sufficient opportunity to excel at anything they desired to pursue. A diagnosis of an SAD does not have to be a limiting factor in the individual’s life but is only an obstacle that hey must overcome to guarantee their development. The transition of an individual from the academic system to post-school life can be relatively daunting and has the potential to induce a substantial amount of apprehension (Anderson et al. , 2014).
The transition from school to post-school life can be troubling for any individual, and the cumbersome nature of this change is exacerbated when an individual suffers from an ASD. Multiple proposals have been published that just how an SAD inflicted individual can make a smooth transition from school to post-school life. The repose of this paper is to examine the evidence-based practices suitable for and required for the transition of an individual with an ASD when transitioning from school to post-school life.
This will be accomplished by reviewing relevant peer-reviewed literature that analyzes how an individual with an ASD disorder can make an appropriate transition from school to post- school life. Different evidence-based practices will be presented in each will be scrutinized to determine the most advantageous method. This paper will be concluded by reiterating the main thoughts and by providing a commendation for which method would allow for the best transition from school to post-school life for an individual suffering from an ASD.
Autism Spectrum Disorder The amount of autism awareness in contemporary society has increased substantially within the past decade (Anderson et al. , 2014). According to Folder (2014), the prevalence of autism in the United States’ increased by 119. 4% from 2000 (1 in 150) to 2010 (1 in 68), making the disorder the fastest- growing developmental disability in the nation. It is been estimated that the number of individuals suffering from an SAD is approximately 3. 5 million, and rent projections suggest that there will be at least 4 million individuals with an SAD by 2020 (Folder, 2014).
The substantial increase ASD in the United States has been (falsely) linked to multiple causes that have yet to be definitively determined by empirical evidence. Anderson et al. (2014) and Folder (2014) indicate that the causes of autism range from troubles in utter to genetic predispositions that cannot be prevented without prior genetic analysis of both parents. Hence, it is difficult to speculate how one can have an increased risk of developing an SAD, which has ultimately resulted in its increased prevalence and incidence rates (Folder, 2014). Bradley et al. 2014) indicated that the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders V classifies an ASD as a mental condition, present from early childhood, characterized by difficulty in communicating and forming relationships with other people and in using language and abstract concepts. The broad symptoms associated with ASD make it difficult to diagnose appropriately each who is suspected of autism; however, contemporary methods of behavioral analysis have significantly improved the successful diagnoses of the disorder. An individual who suffers from an ASD is extremely similar to an individual who be classified as ‘normal’ (Bradley et al. 2014). The key characteristics of an individual with an ASD are that they have difficulty picking up on subtle nonverbal cues and the use of body language (Bradley et al. , 2014). These symptoms can be extrapolated to suggest that an individual who suffers from an ASD finds it difficult to act properly within a social interaction and is unable to express sufficiently their emotions or feelings. This inability to appropriately express their feelings may cause them to feel agitated and or defeated, which could result in outbursts that further exacerbate the situation (Bradley et al. , 2014).
As one can imagine, an individual suffering from an SAD will find it more difficult to cope with their environment as compared to their peers (Foxes et al. , 2015). Children of any age, as well as many adults, are continually developing their social skills and are constantly analyzing their environment to determine the most appropriate reaction to a stimulus (Foxes et al. , 2015). An individual suffering from an SAD will find it increasingly difficult to determine the most appropriate reaction to a particular stimulus and frequently become confused and/or anxious, which can lead to an outburst hat is deemed inappropriate.
Hence, it is necessary to outline how an individual suffering from an SAD can appropriately express themselves that will hopefully reduce the frequency of these non-communicative outbursts in the future (Foxes et al. , 2015). Transition from School to Post-School Life Job hunting can be very discouraging for any person. Furthermore, a child with autism may find it near impossible to be accepted into the working class. Employers are tentative when hiring a person with autism, mainly because they are unaware of their capabilities and are also ignorant of the ways in which they are to be dealt with (Glenn, 2014).
Advocates for neurotransmitters, or greater inclusiveness of people with neurological differences such as Cads and Attention Deficit Disorder, argue that society would benefit from opening workplaces to people whose brains work differently (Glenn, 2014). Working with autism, however, may have some challenges both for the individual and his employees/employers. Although many individuals with autism are fully capable of working, most are unemployed or underemployed because the necessary support services are not available to help them find and keep jobs Herschel-Guttenberg et ale, 2015).
Employment services specifically designed to provide the supports that adults with autism need are still very limited, if they are available at all. There are a few major problems that can arise in the workplace of an employee with Autism. Interaction between fellow employees and employers can lead to many problems (Herschel-Guttenberg et al. , 2015). Discrimination where they treat the autistic worker differently from, less favorably than others is often heard of. Bullying by management, including ridicule and physical/ verbal abuse can also occur, diminishing the elf-confidence of the individual (Yah et 2015).
There may also be a lack of communication and support. People may be hesitant to communicate with that employee with autism with the fear or to say or doing the wrong thing. New work processes can also pose a challenge (Yah et al. , 2015). The imposition of new arrangements at work may cause difficulties for workers on the autistic spectrum may also be challenging to deal with. Personnel Discussion When students are transitioning from school to work, there should be a team available to help guide not only the student but the caretakers and family of aid child.
School psychologists are an important part of the team. They can assist in gathering information relevant to a student’s cognitive, academic, and interpersonal skills. Performing assessing and relating results is also a necessary part of these discussions (Irvin et al. , 2015). Counselors can be added to the discussion to give the individual career guidance. Principals can play a vital role in the transitioning period of a child. Assisting in the development of specific policies and procedures relevant to the process is essential in the planning phase.
Special education coordinators and transition ordinate’s may share some of the responsibility for case management and oversight of the process for individual students. The parents should also be involved to remain fully aware of everything taking place in their child’s life most importantly (Irvin et al. , 2015). The child in question must be a part. Taking responsibility for his/her future is the first step one can take in transitioning from not the only school to a career but from a child to an adult (Irvin et al. , 2015).
Assisted Technologies Assisted Technology is defined in the Technology-Related Assistance Act Tech Act) as “any item piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities” (Irvin et al. , 2015). The main advantage that Assisted technology has been the fact that it can either be made at home and designed specifically for an individual, purchased in a local store, or ordered online.
SAD can present many communication challenges, some may not speak at all whereas some will say very little, and there are those who communicate effectively. In this case, however, communication is very minimal (Irvin et al. , 2015). The assumption still can’t be made that because this autistic individual may not often speak that they are incapable of common acting to others around him. There are some key assisted technologies that will be vital in transitioning to the workplace in this particular instant.
Alternative and Augmentative Communication (CA) approaches can be used to enhance, expand and develop communication skills (Kim et al. , 2014). With individuals with autism, signs, gestures, picture based systems, communication books and speech enervating devices are highly recommended (Kim et al. , 2014). Picture Exchange Communication Systems (PECS) are mostly used. Speech Generating Devices are also advised when dealing with autistic individuals in the workplace (Kim et al. , 2014). They are designed to provide an effective means of verbal communication for individuals whose “natural speech” is not functional for them.
Employers may have to train all employees to be efficient when using these technologies (Kim et al. , 2014). This will ensure a more comforts able environment for both employees without and with autism. Other vices that work well in the workplace with employees with autism are portable Word Processor Keyboard, Talking Word Processor Writing software, Text To Speech Software Program used to convert text from print to audio, Visual Assistants Electronic/Non-Electronic Organizers Assisted Technology has been not without its problems or barriers (Kim et al. 2014). Many times the devices that are needed are very expensive, and resources are not readily available; or the equipment is purchased, and no training or support system is in place to show the individual how to use it effectively; or the device simply areas down and needs to be repaired (Kim et al. , 2014).
Accommodation Many employers find it a burden to make accommodations within their organization to facilitate individuals with disabilities (Siegel et al. , 2014). With physical disabilities, organizations may build ramps or add elevators to ensure their accessibility to the building. With SAD, it is quite different. The following are some ways in which organizations can accommodate individuals with Autism. These methods are modified from Siegel et al. (2014).
Communication: Provide notice of topics to be discussed in meetings to help facilitate immunization Provide notice of date of meeting when employee is required to speak to anxiety Allow employee to provide written response instead of verbal response Allow employee to bring an advocate to performance reviews and disciplinary meetings Time Management: Divide large assignments into several small tasks Provide a checklist of assignments Supply an electronic or handheld organizer and train how to use effectively use a wall calendar to emphasize due dates Body Movements: Provide structured breaks to create an outlet for physical activity Allow the employee to work from home Schedule periodic rest breaks away from the workstation
Provide private workspace where employee will have room to move about and not disturb others by movements such as fidgeting Organization: Develop color-code system for files, projects, or activities Use weekly chart to identify daily work activities Assign a mentor to help employee Assign new project only when the previous project is complete use post-it notes as reminders of important dates or tasks Memory: Safely and securely maintain paper lists of crucial information such as passwords Allow employee to use voice activated recorder to record verbal instructions Provide employee directory with pictures or use nutmeats and or/cubicle Label or color-code each task in sequential or preferential order Effective Transition The previous section explained many different ways in which employers can accommodate individuals with autism. I believe that each child should be self- equipped to cope successfully in the world of work. Teaching them vocational skills is the most effective way in which they can learn about life and its processes. According to Elevations and Palmer, there are four key areas in which students but be trained.
Firstly, they must acquire some level of academic skills. Reading and Writing, Math (basic computation, money, assortment), Problem solving, Speaking, Computer, Art or music and even a Foreign Language can be beneficial. Communication is extremely important especially for children with Autism (Lesson et al 2014). Systematically and explicitly enforcing skills such as following and giving directions, understanding, and processing information and requesting or offering assistance are integral in the effective and efficient transition from school to work (Lesson et 2014). Thirdly, Occupational and Vocational Skills should also be taught simply because they most likely will be needed on the job.
Using a time card and punch a clock, arriving to work on time, using the appropriate voice tone and volume, accepting instructions and corrections are just a few skills that students should teach (Lesson et al. , 2014). Finally Social and Interpersonal Skills like answering the phone and taking a message displaying appropriate workplace behavior and etiquette, knowing appropriate topics for discussion in the workplace must be integrated into the child’s curriculum before entering the work force (Lesson et al. , 2014). If students are not given the opportunity to learn these skills, then any accommodation made by employers will be futile. Reason being that the individuals will not be able to understand, use, operate and learn the specific job that is being offered.
Example of Effective Transition in Metropolitan City In the United States, there is a need for great improvement in services provided for people with special needs. Particularly, with a person who has autism, limited services are available for individuals to transition from one phase of their life to another. In transitioning, having an Individual Education Program (PIPE), is crucial (Lesson et al. , 2014). Many times, Pep’s are rarely pet and used throughout an individuals’ life. It is rarely reviewed or improved (Lesson et al. , 2014). Therefore, in an attempt to transition, there is no documentation as to the person’s strengths, weaknesses or improvements.
This makes it almost impossible for an educator or an employer to know what should be done to make accommodations and facilitate this individual. There is no body, organization or group specialized in helping students’ with special needs further their education or start a career. Parents are left on their own to provide for their kids in whatever way they can (Retaliate et al. , 2015). Most times these children are excluded from working or attending university because there are not enough accommodations or personnel trained to deal with them. Even when trying to locate information on transition services available in this country, all efforts are too little or no avail. Retaliate et al. 2015) stated that early intervention, and secondary transitional services for special needs students needed to be implemented. Moving forward, educators believe that primary school students should be afforded the expertise to take advantage of every opportunity life presents and to adapt positively to new circumstances. There have been some examples where children with special needs, specifically autism, have been able to transition into higher education and build successful careers (Retaliate et al. , 2015). Nevertheless, most individuals continue to suffer at their homes without any avenue in which they can take to become a meaningful contributor to society.