Our Approach

Treatment Approaches

We teach new skills in the context of natural play routines and daily activities, rather than teaching skills in isolation and later generalizing them to "real life" contexts. We build mutually pleasurable activity routines within natural activities that provide opportunities to develop communication, social, self-regulation and learning skills.

Our approach included a responsive/facilitative teaching style and flexible session structure. We also use more systematic instruction as needed to teach targeted skills.

Our core strategies draw from the following manualized, evidence-based approaches: Responsive Teaching (Mahoned & MacDonald), the Early Start Denver Model (Rogers & Dawson), SCERTS program (Prizant, Wetherby, et al), and Pivotal Response Training (Koegel & Koegel).

Treatment Objectives

We rely upon a database of goals informed by developmental theory and designed to improve a child's functioning in daily life. Goals are selected after doing an assessment of the child's current functioning, the child's immediate needs and parent priorities. Goals are organized into five "competency areas" which include:

Theoretical & Research Underpinnings

Development theory and research has guided our understanding of the children in our treatment program. Consistent with decades of theory and research, we believe that play is an essential vehicle for learning and growth.

Our treatment program has always relied on the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA). We define behaviors in observable, measurable terms in order to assess change over time. We analyze environments to identify factors that influence the child's behavior. We routinely use task analysis, functional behavior assessment, positive behavioral supports and other behavioral principles in our everyday work.

Evidence-Based Practices

To be considered an evidence-based practice for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), efficacy must be established through research published in peer-reviewed scientific journals.

The following standard treatment practices at IDS meet the criteria for evidence-based practices set forth by the National and Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Curriculum

Our Autism Treatment Programs are designed for families who want a play-based, relationship-focused approach to autism intervention, and who want to be active partners in their child's treatment program.

We teach new skills in the context of natural play routines and daily activities, rather than teaching skills in isolation and later generalizing them to "real life" contexts. We build mutually pleasurable joint activity routines within natural activities that provide opportunities to develop communication, social, self-regulation, and learning skills. Most of the time, our teaching approach includes a responsive/facilitative teaching style and flexible session structure. We also use more systematic instruction as needed to teach targeted skills.

Our core strategies draw from the following manualized, evidence-based approaches: Responsive Teaching (Mahoned & MacDonald), the Early Start Denver Model (Rogers & Dawson), SCERTS program (Prizant, Wetherby, et al), and Pivotal Response Training (Koegel & Koegel). In addition, our treatment program has always relied upon principles of applied behavior analysis. We define behaviors in observable, measurable terms in order to assess change over time. We analyze environments to identify factors that influence the child's behavior. We routinely use task analysis, functional behavior assessment, positive behavioral supports, and other behavioral principles in our everyday work.

We rely upon a database of goals informed by developmental theory and designed to improve a child's functioning in daily life. Goals are selected after doing an assessment of the child's current functioning, the child's immediate needs in daily life, and parent priorities. Goals are organized into five "competency areas" which include: