Autism & Asperger’s Disorder:
Instructor Name: Dr. Marrea Winnega
Office Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST Monday – Friday
Address: Virtual Education Software
16201 E Indiana Ave, Suite 1450
Spokane, WA 99216
Technical Support: email@example.com
Welcome to Autism & Asperger’s Disorder, an interactive computer-based instruction course designed to help you achieve a better understanding of Autism and Asperger’s Disorder, of intervention strategies to enhance communication and learning, and of methods for teaching more conventional behaviors. Autism & Asperger’s Disorder provides information on the characteristics of the disorder, learning styles associated with the disorder, communication weaknesses, and various intervention strategies that have proven to be successful when working with students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. The course helps you comprehend why individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders act the way they do, and what you can do to enhance more appropriate behavior. This course also lists resources for educators, related service personnel, and parents who would like more help or information on autism and Asperger’s Disorder.
This computer-based instruction course is a self-supporting program that provides instruction, structured practice, and evaluation all on your home or school computer. Technical support information can be found in the Help section of your course.
Course Materials (Online)
Title: Autism & Asperger’s Disorder: Information & Effective Intervention Strategies
Author: Dr. Marrea Winnega, Ph.D. & Mary Coughlin, CCC-SLP
Publisher: Virtual Education Software, inc. 2001, Revised 2002, Revised 2004, Revised 2010, Revised 2014
Instructor: Dr. Marrea Winnega
Academic work submitted by the individual (such as papers, assignments, reports, tests) shall be the student’s own work or appropriately attributed, in part or in whole, to its correct source. Submission of commercially prepared (or group prepared) materials as if they are one’s own work is unacceptable.
Aiding Honesty in Others
The individual will encourage honesty in others by refraining from providing materials or information to another person with knowledge that these materials or information will be used improperly.
Violations of these academic standards will result in the assignment of a failing grade and subsequent loss of credit for the course.
This course is designed to be an informational course with application in work or work-related settings. The intervention strategies are designed to be used with students with autism and Asperger’s Disorder ranging in age from approximately three years to adulthood.
As a result of this course, participants will demonstrate their ability to:
· To define the characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorder and Asperger’s for better understanding of these disorders
· To increase the ability to identify students having these disorders
· To provide information on how individuals with these disorders are different from other students, and how to teach them given these differences
· To understand their behavior in terms of their differences and communication styles
· To develop an understanding of the communication differences and weaknesses in students with autism or Asperger’s
· To provide information on teaching strategies
· To provide resources for teachers and parents
The course Autism & Asperger’s Disorder has been divided into four chapters and into five to eight exercises within each chapter. The first chapter is on the diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder; it gives a clear picture of the characteristics that define these disorders. Although the information in this chapter is thorough, there is much information published about autism and Asperger’s Disorder. We recommend that you complete readings and research outside the course materials to gain a fuller understanding of these disorders and the variety of interventions. To cover all areas and issues affecting students with autism or Asperger’s and their behavior would not be possible in one course. However, this introduction chapter and subsequent chapters should give you a firm understanding of the disorder and effective tools for facilitating positive changes with these students.
The second chapter of Autism & Asperger’s Disorder is “Behaviors & Differences.” This chapter discusses ways in which individuals with autism or Asperger’s are different from other learners. The information in this chapter serves to increase your understanding of autism and Asperger’s so that an effective intervention plan can be developed to help the student with communication and/or behavioral difficulties. Gaining an understanding of the possible reasons for their behaviors will also help in the understanding of why certain interventions are more successful in teaching these students.
The third chapter is “Communication & Language.” In this chapter, you will be given information about the prerequisites of communication, the components of speech and language, and the profiles of nonverbal and verbal children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. You will be provided with interventions to enhance communication.
The final chapter covers “Visually Supported Communication.” You will learn how to use visual supports, schedules, and calendars to help students with autism or Asperger’s monitor their time and program more effectively and independently. You will learn to use the strategy of “first/then” to help children finish important daily tasks before moving into pleasurable free-time activities. You will also be presented with some case examples to strengthen your understanding.
As a student, you will be expected to:
This section focuses on the characteristics that define the autism spectrum. The areas to be discussed are the social and communication deficits and the restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests or activities exhibited by individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
This section describes how individuals with autism and Asperger’s perceive the world and their different learning styles. These differences will be applied to the behavioral challenges these students exhibit.
Chapter 3 – Communication & Language
This section discusses the prerequisites for communication, such as object permanence and cause and effect, the components of speech and language, and the communication profiles exhibited by individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Enhancing communication in both the nonverbal and the verbal student will be addressed.
Chapter 4 – Visually Supported Communication
This section discusses how visual supports can be used to help students understand verbal directions and what they need to be doing. Visual supports include symbols, line drawings and pictures used as pictures on a ring, communication boards, schedules, lists and first/then cards.
At the end of each chapter, you will be expected to complete an examination designed to assess your knowledge. You may take these exams a total of three times. Your last score will save, not the highest score. After your third attempt, each examination will lock and not allow further access. Your final grade for the course will be determined by calculating an average score of all exams. This score will be printed on your final certificate. As this is a self-paced computerized instruction program, you may review course information as often as necessary. You will not be able to exit any examinations until you have answered all questions. If you try to exit the exam before you complete all questions, your information will be lost. You are expected to complete the entire exam in one sitting.
Autism & Asperger’s Disorder
has been developed by Marrea Winnega, Ph.D., BCBA and Mary Coughlin, CCC-SLP,
BCBA. Dr. Marrea Winnega, the instructor of record, is a Licensed
Clinical Psychologist and Board Certified Behavior Analyst with more than 20
years of experience in the field of Autism Spectrum Disorders. Currently, she
is the Director of School Consulting for Autism Home Support Services and an
Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology in the University of Illinois
at Chicago Department of Disability and Human Development. She consults for
schools and agencies serving individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders,
including Asperger’s Disorder. She facilitated numerous parent groups for
parents of children with autism in her position at the
Mary Coughlin is a Speech-Language Pathologist and Board Certified Behavior Analyst with more than 25 years of experience in the field. Her background includes working with students in both regular education and special education settings. She has taught in a communication development classroom and has worked with students with behavior disorders; students with severe-profound disabilities, birth to 5; and medically fragile children, as well as those with developmental delays and autism. She served on a diagnostic team serving early childhood children for more than 10 years. For the last 15 years she has worked with students with autism and significant other impairments. She has presented numerous workshops for parents and professionals on the various aspects of communication, speech, and language. She worked with Dr. Winnega in Autism Dynamic Beginnings since its inception and currently serves as a consultant to the program (renamed Students Teachers Achieving Results (STAR) program) incorporating verbal behavior approach and structured teaching into effective teaching strategies for its students.
If you have questions or problems related to the operation of this course, please try everything twice. If the problem persists please check our support pages for FAQs and known issues at www.virtualeduc.com and also the Help section of your course.
If you need personal assistance then email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (509) 891-7219. When contacting technical support, please know your course version number (it is located at the bottom left side of the Welcome Screen) and your operating system, and be seated in front of the computer at the time of your call.
Minimum Computer Requirements
Please refer to VESi’s website: www.virtualeduc.com or contact VESi if you have further questions about the compatibility of your operating system.
Refer to the addendum regarding Grading Criteria, Course Completion Information, Items to be Submitted and how to submit your completed information. The addendum will also note any additional course assignments that you may be required to complete that are not listed in this syllabus.
Psychological Association. (2013). Diagnostic
and statistical manual of mental
disorders (5th ed.).(DSM-5).
Attwood, T. (1998). Asperger’s
Syndrome: A guide for parents and professionals.
T. (2004). Exploring feelings: Cognitive
behavior therapy to manage anxiety. Arlington,
Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network. (2014, March 28). Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 63, 1-21. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml /ss6302a1.htm?s_cid=ss6302a1_w
Baker, J. (2006).
Social skills picture book: Teaching play, emotion, and communication to
children with autism.
Barbera, M., & Rasmussen, T.
(2007). The verbal behavior approach: How to teach children with autism and
Bellini, S. (2008). Building social relationships: A systematic approach to teaching social interaction skill to children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorders and other social difficulties. Shawnee Mission, KS: Autism Asperger.
Betz, A., Higbee, T. S., & Reagon, K. (2008). Using joint activity schedules to promote peer engagement in preschoolers with autism. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 41, 237-241.
Bondy, A., &
Frost, L. (2001). Topics in autism: A
picture’s worth PECS and other visual communication strategies in autism.
Buron, K. D.,
& Curis, M. (2003). The incredible 5-point scale.
CDC (Centers for Disease Control). (2010, May 13). Autism Spectrum Disorders: Data & statistics. Retrieved from
Cannon, L., Kenworthy, L., Alexander, K. C., Werner, M. A. & Anthony, L. G. (2011). Unstuck and on target! Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes.
Carbone, V. J., O’Brien, L., Sweeney-Kerwin, E. J., & Albert, K. M. (2013). Teaching eye contact to children with autism: A conceptual analysis and single case study. Education and Treatment of Children, 36, 139-159. doi:10.1353/etc.2013.0013
J. (2005). Super skills: A social
skills group program for children with Asperger Syndrome, high-functioning
autism and related challenges.
Daniels, A. M., Rosenberg, R. E., Kiely Law, J., Lord, C., Kaufmann, W. E., & Law, P. A. Stability of initial autism spectrum disorder diagnoses in community settings. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Published online May 15, 2010.
& Harris, S. (2004). Topics in
autism: Incentives for change motivating people with autism spectrum disorders
to learn and gain independence.
Donnellan, A., LaVigna, G.,
Negri-Shoultz, N., & Fassbender, L. (1988). Progress without punishment:Effective approaches for learners with
Dake, L., & Tamir,
& Bondy, A. (2002). The picture exchange
communication system training manual (2nd ed.).
(1995). Thinking in pictures and other
reports from my life with autism.
Grandin, T., & Scariano, M. (1996). Emergence: Labeled autistic. Warner Books.
Greene, R. W. (2009). The explosive child: A new approach for understanding and parenting easily frustrated, "chronically inflexible" children (Rev. 4th ed.).New York, NY: Harper Collins.
Haebig, E., McDuffie, A., Weismer, S. E., Hammer, C. S., & Brady, N. (2013). The contribution of two categories of parent verbal responsiveness to later language for toddlers and preschoolers on the autism spectrum. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 22, 57-70. doi: 10.1044/1058-0360(2012/11-0004)
Hanley, G. P., Jin, C. S., Vanselow, N. R., & Hanratty, L. A. (2014). Producing meaningful improvements in problem behavior of children with autism via synthesized analyses and treatments. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 47, 16–36. doi:10.1002/jaba.106
Hodgdon, L. (1995). Visual
strategies for improving communication.
Jones, J., Lerman, D. C., & Lechago, S. (2014). Assessing stimulus control and promoting generalization via video modeling when teaching social responses to children with autism. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 47, 37-50. doi: 10.1002/jaba.81
Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 46(1), Spring 2013 – Special Issue on Functional Analysis: Commemorating Thirty Years of Research and Practice. doi:10.1002/jaba.v46.1/issuetoc
Klin, A., Jones, W., Schultz, R., Volkmar, F., & Cohen, D. (2002). Visual fixation patterns during viewing of naturalistic social situations as predictors of social competence in individuals with autism. Archives of General Psychiatry, 59(9), 809-816.
Kluth, P. (2003). You’re going to love this kid!
Teaching students with autism in the inclusive classroom.
Kodak, T., & Clements, A. (2009). Acquisition of mands and tacts with concurrent echoic training. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 42, 839-843.
Koegel, R. L., Bradshaw, J., Ashbaugh, K.,
Koegel, L. K. (2014). Improving question-asking
initiations in young children with autism using pivotal response treatment. Journal of Autism and
Developmental Disorders, 44,
Koegel, R. L., Kim, S., Koegel, L. K., & Schwartzman, B. (2013). Improving socialization for high school students with ASD by using their preferred interests. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 43, 2121-2134. doi:10.1007/s10803-013-1765-3
R. L., & Koegel, L. K. (1995). Teaching
children with autism.
Koegel, R. L., Shirotova, L., & Koegel, L. K. (2009). Brief report: Using individualized orienting cues to facilitate first-word acquisition in non-responders with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 39, 1587-1592.
March 2014 link to Koegel et al. research: http://education.ucsb.edu/autism/research/publications
Kuypers, L. (2011). The zones of regulation: A curriculum designed to foster self-regulation and emotional control. San Jose, CA: Think Social.
Leach, D. (2010).
& McEachin, J. (Eds.). (1999). A work
Leaf, R., Taubman,
M., & McEachin, J. (2008). It’s time
for school! Building quality
Lord, C., Risi, S., DiLavore, P. S., Shulman, C., Thurm, A., & Pickles, A. (2006). Autism from 2 to 9 years of age. Archives of General Psychiatry, 63(6), 694-701.
Mattila, M., Hurtig, T., Haapsamo, H., Jussila, K., Kuusikko-Gauffin, S., Kielinen, M., . . . Miolanen, I. (2010). Comorbid psychiatric disorders associated with Asperger Syndrome/High-functioning autism: A community-and clinic-based study. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, published online, February 23, 2010.
Maurice, C. (1994). Let me hear your voice: A family’s triumph over autism (Reprint ed.). New York, NY: Ballantine Books.
& Krantz, P. (1999). Topics in
autism: Activity schedules for children with autism teaching independent
K., & Krempa, J. (2002). Social skills solutions: A hands-on manual for
teaching social skills to children with autism.
McLaughlin, S. (1998). Introduction to language development. San Diego, CA: Singular Publishing Group.
Mesibov, G. & Shea, V. (2010). The TEACCH program in the era of evidence-based practice. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 40, 570-579.
G. B., Shea, V., & Schopler, E. (2005). The TEACCH approach to autism
B. S., & Simpson, R. (1998). Asperger
Syndrome: A guide for educators and parents.
Myles, B. S.,
& Southwick, J. (1999). Asperger Syndrome and difficult moments.
Myles, B. S.,
Trautman, M. L., & Schelvan, R. L. (2004). The hidden curriculum.
Odom, S. L., Boyd, B. A., Hall, L. J., & Hume, K. (2010). Evaluation of comprehensive treatment models for individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 40, 425-436.
Orellana, L.M., Martínez-Sanchis, S., & Silvestre, F. J. (2014). Training adults and children with an autism spectrum disorder to be compliant with a clinical dental assessment using a TEACCH-based approach. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 44, 776-785. doi:10.1007/s10803-013-1930-8
W. (2008). ABLLS-R: Assessment of Basic Language and Learning
R., Loomis, R., & Chawarska, K. (2014). Adaptive behavior in toddlers
under two with autism spectrum disorders. Journal
of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 44, 264-270.
& Whittaker, C. (2001). Enabling
communication in children with autism.
Quill, K. A. (Ed.). (1995). Teaching children with autism: Strategies to enhance communication and
Quill, K. A.
(2000). Do-Watch-Listen-Say: Social and
communication intervention for children with autism.
Sallows, G. O., & Graupner, T. D. (2005). Intensive behavioral treatment for children with autism: Four-year outcome and predictors. American Journal of Mental Retardation, 110, 417-438.
Skinner, B. F. (1957). Verbal
Sundberg, M. (2008). VB-MAPP Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program. Concord, CA: AVB Press.
& Partington, J. (1998). Teaching
language to children with autism or other developmental disabilities.
(2009). Freedom from meltdowns.
Vanselow, N. R., & Hanley, G. P. (2014). An evaluation of computerized behavioral skill training to teach safety skills to young children. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 47, 51–69. doi:10.1901/jaba.2005.26-04
J. (2013). Behavior analysis for
effective teaching (2nd ed.).
S. (1998). Inclusive programming for elementary students with autism.
S. (2002). Inclusive programming for middle schools students with
Wetherby, A. M., & Prizant,
B. (2000). Autism spectrum disorders: A
transactional developmental perspective.
Latest information in a variety of journals, including: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders; Focus on Autism; Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis
Books by Carol Gray:
The New Social Story Book, The New Social Story Book-Illustrated Edition, Taming the Recess Jungle. Available through Future Horizons.
Autism Society of
Contact the Autism Society for information about local chapters and state associations.
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, Vol. 35, No. 2, April 2005 – This issue focuses on Asperger’s Disorder.
Future Horizons, Inc.
Autism Asperger Publishing Co.
Course content is updated every three years. Due to this update timeline, some URL links may no longer be active or may have changed. Please type the title of the organization into the command line of any Internet browser search window and you will be able to find whether the URL link is still active or any new link to the
corresponding organization's web home page.
Updated 10/24/14 JN