Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
Students on the Autism Spectrum (AS) are growing by leaps and bounds and as educators we need to know how to work with these amazing individuals. The more campus professionals understand how difficult it is for AS students to adjust to change and how different each case may be, the more we can do to help this populations of bright and inquisitive students who have so much to offer.
I encourage you to seek out the resources below to learn how to help AS students be successful in college.
Temple Grandin (2010) – A fact based story of an autistic woman who became an unlikely hero to America’s cattle industry, and to autistic people across the country.
Autism Spectrum: Helping Student’s Transition and Succeed – This video will provide tips on how to work with AS college students. Power Point handouts are also available.
- Evernote – Intuitive note taking system
- Time Timer – Timer used for studying, breaks, sleep, etc.
- Erudio – Manage courses with dates, times, and locations.
- Firefly Application – Digital access to textbooks, novels, articles, etc.
- Dragon Naturally Speaking – Speech recognition software
- Echo Live Scribe Pens – Records everything students hear, say and write.
Southwest Autism Research & Resources (SARCC) – www.autismcenter.org
Using an Interpreter in Your Classroom:
- Sign Language interpreters facilitates communication between an individual who is deaf/hard of hearing and a normally hearing individual. Their role is to "bridge the gap" between two individuals who do not share the same language and/or mode of communication.
- Relax. Using an interpreter is not meant to be difficult or overwhelming!
- A Sign Language Interpreter is licensed by the State of Arizona, credentialed, and bound by a code of confidentiality.
- Speak naturally. There is "lag time" involved between the spoken message and the interpretation; however, the interpreter will inform you to repeat something or slow down.
- Maintain eye contact with the Deaf student - the interpreter is there to facilitate the communication between yourself and the student.
- Don't ask any the interpreter any personal questions about the student. The interpreter is bound by a code of confidentiality and cannot repeat any information they have learned on previous interpreting jobs.
- American Sign Language is a language with its own unique grammar and syntax which bears no relation to spoken English.
- Do not say things that you do not want interpreted. The interpreter ethically must interpret everything they hear.
- If there are written materials for the student, ask the interpreter if he or she would like copies.
- During testing the interpreter will be available to interpret your instructions and the student’s questions concerning the test. Interpreters follow a National Code of Professional Conduct. The Interpreters will not interpret the test.
- Longer class times and/or full-time interpreting schedules require the use of a team of two interpreters. Teaming allows the interpreters to switch primary and secondary roles every 15-20 minutes. This helps avoid physical damage to the interpreters (repetitive motion injury) and reduces mental fatigue, which causes degradation of the interpreted message for the student.
Captioning How-To & Resources:
Deaf and hard of hearing viewers are excluded without captions, which is both a legal, and an ethical problem. But in addition to that, studies show that captions are beneficial beyond just the deaf and hard of hearing population. Captions make it possible for people to view your video in sound-sensitive environments, like offices and libraries. Captions make it possible to view your video when they’re in noisy environments, such as restaurants, sports clubs and public transit. Captions help ESL viewers. Captions help when dialogue is spoken very quickly, or the speaker has an accent or mumbles, when there is background noise, and when the subject matter is complicated. Studies have shown captions increase viewer retention and user engagement, as well as SEO (search engine optimization). Captions are good for everybody.
Captioning Online Videos in YouTube Using a Transcript
Simply create a transcript of the video you post and upload that transcript, the voice recognition engine will put the timings in for you. Here are the steps to do it:
- Create your video.
- Create a transcript of your video and save it as a Rich Text Format file.
- Upload your video to YouTube.
- Go to the “My Videos” section of your YouTube account.
- Find the video you just uploaded.
- Select the “Captions” button.
- Select the “Add New Captions or Transcript” button.
- Browse to your transcript file.
- Select “Transcript file” with the radio buttons.
- Select “Upload file” button.
- Community Resources:
- Arizona Vocational Rehabilitation Services – https://des.az.gov/services/employment/rehabilitation-services/vocational-rehabilitation-vr
- Office for Civil Rights: Auxiliary Aids & Services for Postsecondary Students with Disabilities – https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/auxaids.html
- Office for Civil Rights: Transition of Students with Disabilities to Postsecondary Education: A Guide for High School Educators – https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/transitionguide.html
- Arizona Bridge to Independent Living – www.abil.org/
- Job Accommodation Network – askjan.org/
Financial Aid & Scholarships:
- Financial Aid Guide for Students with Disabilities – www.onlineschools.org/financial-aid/disabilities/