This book examines a group-based adaptation of the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) designed for use with preschoolers with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). It describes the principles and procedures of the Group-Based Early Start Denver Model (G-ESDM) and provides practical and empirical guidelines for implementing effective, affordable programs across public healthcare and educational settings. Chapters offer rationales and strategies for designing and evaluating interventions, building interdisciplinary teams, and organizing learning spaces to engage student interest. Examples discuss the social interactions in groups that provide opportunities for learning, improving interpersonal skills, and reducing problem behaviors. In addition, the book offers ideas for retooling teaching strategies when an individual child lags behind the rest of the group.
Featured topics include:
• Creating treatment objectives in the G-ESDM.
• Setting up the G-ESDM team and learning environment.
• Development of the G-ESDM classroom curriculum.
• Practical tools such as decision-making trees, teaching templates, and fidelity systems.
• Facilitating learning through peer interactions and social participation.
Implementing the Group-Based Early Start Denver Model for Preschoolers with Autism is a must-have resource for clinicians and practitioners as well as researchers, professors, and graduate students in the fields of child and school psychology, behavioral therapy, and social work along with psychiatry, pediatrics, and educational and healthcare policy.
About the Authors:
Giacomo Vivanti, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor in the Early Detection and Intervention research program at the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute, Drexel University, Philadelphia. His previous experience includes a visiting fellowship at the Yale Child Study Center and a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California Davis MIND Institute under the mentorship of Dr. Sally Rogers. During 2010, he became Research Fellow at the Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre in Melbourne, Australia, where he worked on a federally funded five-year project on the implementation of the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) in a group-based early intervention setting. Dr. Vivanti serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders and the Encyclopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders. He is also a member of the Department of the Health Committee to establish evidence-based guidelines for autism treatment in Italy, a certified therapist and trainer in the Early Start Denver Model autism intervention program, and a member of the Early Start Denver Model Training Advisory Group. He is author of approximately 50 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters about autism spectrum disorder.
Ed Duncan, B.S., M.B.A, is Clinical Director of the Autism Specific Early Learning and Care Centre (ASELCC) at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. Ed has worked at this federally funded service on the implementation of the Early Start Denver Model in a group-based early intervention program since it began in 2010. His previous experiences include working as a manager and speech pathologist in several nonprofit organisations, specializing in working with young children with autism who are minimally verbal. He has held representative positions with AGOSCI (an organisation supporting the needs of people with complex communication needs) and more recently joined the Australian National Disability Insurance Agency. Mr. Duncan has contributed scientific articles to the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders and entries within the Encyclopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D., is Professor, Departments of Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Psychology and Neuroscience, Duke University. She is the Director of the Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development, where she oversees interdisciplinary autism research and clinical services for individuals with autism spectrum disorder. She has published extensively on early detection, brain development, and treatment of autism. Dawson is President of the International Society for Autism Research (2015-2017) and serves on the NIH Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee, which develops the federal strategic plan for autism research. Dawson received a Ph.D. in Developmental and Child Clinical Psychology from University of Washington and completed a clinical internship at UCLA.
Sally J. Rogers, Ph.D., is a developmental psychologist, clinician, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Director of Training and Mentoring at the MIND Institute, University of California Davis. She has been the principal investigator of several NIH funded multi-site autism research projects, including a ten year CPEA program project and two funded Autism Centers of Excellence (ACE) network projects. She has served as president of the International Society for Autism Research, associate editor of the journal Autism Research, a member of the Autism Speaks Global Autism Public Health Initiative, a fellow of the American Psychological Association, Division 33, and a member of the Autism, PDD, and other Developmental Disorders workgroup for the DSM 5. The Early Start Denver Model that she developed with Geri Dawson and other colleagues at University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, University of Washington, and University of California Davis is internationally known and recognized by Time.com and Autism Speaks as one of the 10 most important scientific findings of 2012.