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The Effects Of An Accelerated Parent Education Program On Technique Mastery And Child Outcome

Aubyn C. Stahmer, Kristin Gist

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Educating parents of children with autism regarding how to act as treatment providers for their own children is now understood to be an essential component of successful treatment programs. Although most parent education programs have been successful overall in teaching parents to use specific techniques, the programs are often time consuming and costly, and some parents continue to have difficulty learning, then implementing, techniques at home. The current project assessed the addition of a parent education support group to an accelerated parent education program. Both groups of families received individualized parent education for 12 weeks. One group also attended a weekly parent education support group. Both parent mastery of the parent education techniques and the children's language skills were assessed before and after training. Results indicate that inclusion of a parent education support group in a parent education program may increase parent mastery of teaching techniques and success of accelerated programming and, in turn, increase children's language success. Limitations and implications of this clinical research study are discussed.