The overall purpose of this Goal 2: Development and Innovation project is to enhance the existing Advancing Social-communication and Play (ASAP) intervention through development of a technologically supported system of home-school collaboration. ASAP was originally designed as a classroom-based intervention, in which the educational teams serving preschool-aged children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) were trained to implement the intervention. The primary focus of ASAP is to improve the social-communication and play skills of children with ASD. Although preliminary child outcomes for ASAP appear promising, other anecdotal and empirical data demonstrate the need to better involve parents in intervention planning and implementation. Importantly, establishing effective ways to support home-school communication early on sets the stage for longer-term relationships between school providers and parents (Izzo, Weissberg, Kasprow, & Fedrich, 1999). Thus, the specific goal of this project is to develop and pilot test a responsive website as the primary method of supporting home-school collaboration. The website developed through the Promoting ASAP Collaboration through Technology (PACT) project is responsive in that it can generate individualized recommendations based on the child’s needs. The website will be able to support parents in assessing their children’s current social-communication and play skills at home, determining appropriate child goals based on the assessment, self-monitoring their implementation, and documenting child progress; also, the website will promote reciprocal communication about ASAP between parents and the school-based team. Within the context of home-school communication, parents want both informal, personal conversations with teachers as well as strategies to supplement classroom teachings at home (Wanat, 2010). The PACT project addresses both of these needs.

image2

Contact Person

Stephanie Reszka, stephanie.reszka@unc.edu, Co-PI

Investigators and Key Personnel

Brian Boyd – PI Stephanie Reszka – Co-PI Linda Watson – Investigator Elizabeth Crais – Investigator Grace Baranek – Investigator Wanqing Zhang – Methodologist/Statistician

Primary Funding Source

US Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences (IES)