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Spoiler Alert! The Research Shows our Course WORKS.

The results of the research from our pilot group and first cohort of public training for people supporting the communication of nonspeaking autistic students show that our course was effective in teaching professionals and caregivers new knowledge about multimodal text based communication in multiple domains.

Even better, the course was effective in changing their practices to support students with communication needs. These findings are statistically significant (meaning they are legit!).

Lisa and Julie stand in front of their presentation screen at the TASH national conference

December 1, our course creators Lisa Mihalich Quinn and Julie Sando presented this research at the 2023 TASH national conference in Baltimore, Maryland.

We hope to publish the full results soon, but for now, here's a quick run down of the important points:

  • A total of 10 participants enrolled in the pilot and 73 participants enrolled in the first group of the revised course, for a total of 83 participants during the study period.

  • Participants were teachers, SLPs, OTs, administrators, direct support professionals, AAC specialists, and parents / homeschool educators.

  • 48 participants completed both pre and post-course assessments.

  • Growth in Knowledge: Paired dependent sample t-tests showed participants experienced statistically significant growth in knowledge across all 11 areas measured.

  • Growth in Practices: The paired t-test for growth in practices showed significant gains with large effect sizes in 7 areas. In two areas - using the language ladder and adapting academics - participants experienced statistically significant growth.

  • We qualitatively analyzed open ended responses as a secondary data source. These responses supported the quantitative data, but also gave us more insight into the ways in which participants changed in their knowledge and behaviors.


Highlights from our qualitative data:

"Hearing from those who experience the use of multimodal text-based AAC opened up lots of avenues of thought on how to work with students and to be respectful, supportive and creative in that work.”
“This is a wonderfully collaborative meeting of the minds and it is so very needed to ensure a more equitable education for nonspeaking students!”
“I learned that it is possible to provide a rich education for nonspeaking individuals. It changed the way I think about all parts of my teaching (writing goals, planning lessons, training staff, etc.). I will make changes to the way I teach daily.
"I was really surprised at how fast my student is taking to the letter board. I used core word symbols all year and his lack of accuracy and engagement was so discouraging. I thought he knew his letters but it now looks like he is connecting them to words. He's probably reading. So though I thought I was presuming competence, what I was doing was still selling my students short until I just made a leap.

Ready to take a leap with us?

Learn more about our live and self-paced learning options.


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