A brief individualized training system to promote child engagement in inclusive preschool settings

Gomez, Aletha L.
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Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2008.
There is substantial research supporting inclusion of children with autism and individualizing their services. The issue is development of strategies that special education professionals can use to assist Early Childhood Education (ECE) teachers to interact with children with autism in ways that facilitate peer engagement. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of a brief, individualized, training system (BITS) on the interactions of ECE teachers with children with autism. Additionally, the secondary effect of BITS child engagement (cooperative participation and communication with peers) was investigated. This brief and individualized professional development approach is in marked contrast to traditional in-service training which is expensive, difficult to access, and so broad that it could be termed a "shotgun approach." A nonconcurrent multiple baseline design was used across 3 teacher and 3 child participants. The results suggests that in a relatively brief amount of time (one 90 minute training session and three feedback sessions involving a maximum of 15 minutes per session), it is possible to train ECE teachers to use effective strategies (prompts and praise) to increase the engagement of children with autism with their peers. A relationship was found. Descriptive prompting increased for all three teachers after the training. This increase in prompting appeared to have an effect on child engagement as it also increased across all three children. Finally, all three teachers considered the BITS to be significant, socially appropriate, and useful with the target children.
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 239-253).
Also available by subscription via World Wide Web
253 leaves, bound 29 cm
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Theses for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (University of Hawaii at Manoa). Education; no. 5029
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