American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

EBP Compendium: Summary of Clinical Practice Guideline

National Autism Center
National Standards Report

National Autism Center. (2009).
National Autism Center, 1–161.

AGREE Rating: Highly Recommended

Description:

This guideline provides recommendations for treatment of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders. The audience for this guideline includes parents, caregivers, educators, and service providers. Treatments have been evaluated and determined to be established, emerging, or unestablished. No treatments were determined to be ineffective or harmful. 

Recommendations:

  • Treatment
    • Cognition/Language
      • General Findings, Behavioral Interventions, Video Modeling, Peer Mediated/Implemented, Pivotal Response, Social Stories
        • The guideline authors stress that treatment selection should be made by a team of individuals and that this document should not dictate which treatments can or cannot be used for individuals with autism. However, the following suggestions are made to assist in decision making.
        • “We recommend the decision-making team give serious consideration to [Established Treatments] because these treatments have produced beneficial effects for individuals involved in the research studies published in the scientific literature, b) access to treatments that work can be expected to produce more positive long-term outcomes, and c) there is no evidence of harmful effects” (p. 76).
        • Established interventions that have been shown to increase communication skills include:
          • Antecedent Package
          • Behavioral Package
          • Comprehensive Behavioral Treatment for Young Children
          • Joint Attention
          • Modeling
          • Naturalistic Teaching Strategies
          • Peer Training
          • Pivotal Response Treatment
        • Established interventions that have been shown to increase interpersonal skills include:
          • Antecedent Package
          • Behavioral Package
          • Comprehensive Behavioral Treatment for Young Children
          • Joint Attention
          • Modeling
          • Naturalistic Teaching Strategies
          • Peer Training
          • Pivotal Response Treatment
          • Self-management
          • Story-based
      • AAC, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Peer-Mediated/Implemented, Social Scripts
        • "Given the limited research support for Emerging Treatments, we generally do not recommend beginning with these treatments. However, Emerging Treatments should be considered promising and warrant serious consideration if Established Treatments are deemed inappropriate by the decision-making team" (p. 76).
        • Emerging treatments that have been shown to increase communication skills include:
          • Augmentative and alternative communication
          • Developmental relationship-based treatment
          • Language training
          • Multi-component packages
          • Picture exchange communication system
          • Sign instruction
          • Social communication intervention
          • Structured teaching
          • Technology-based treatment
        • Emerging treatments that have been shown to increase interpersonal skills include:
          • Cognitive behavioral intervention package
          • Developmental relationship-based treatment
          • Imitation training
          • Multi-component package
          • Peer-mediated instructional arrangement
          • Picture exchange communication system
          • Scripting
          • Social communication
          • Social skills package
          • Structured teaching
      • Auditory/Sensory Integration Training, Facilitated Communication
        • “Unestablished Treatments either have no research support or the research that has been conducted does not allow us to draw firm conclusions about treatment effectiveness for individuals with ASD… Given how little is known about these treatments, we would recommend considering these treatments only after additional research has been conducted and this research shows tem to produce favorable outcomes for individuals with ASD” (p. 76).
        • Unestablished treatments include academic interventions, auditory integration training, facilitated communication gluten- and casein-free diet, and sensory integrative package. 

Keywords: Autism Spectrum Disorders; Behavioral Treatments; Augmentative and Alternative Communication; American Sign Language; Parent-Mediated Intervention; Picture Exchange Communication System; Pivotal Response; Relationship-Based Intervention; Sensory Integration; Social Skills

Access the Guideline

Added to Compendium: November 2011

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