General speech and language therapy services for an individual with an autism spectrum disorder include an initial evaluation by the clinic’s diagnostic team to determine necessity of services and skill areas to target. During the COVID pandemic, the autism team has developed a Telehealth option for the diagnostic process; an article in the October 2021 newsletter from the Autism Society of Iowa describes Telehealth options at the University of Iowa.
After an initial evaluation, an individualized care plan will target goals to maximize each child’s functioning.
Skills targeted in therapy may include:
- receptive language
- expressive language
- social/interaction skills
- executive functioning skills
- augmentative and alternative communication
- literacy/reading comprehension
Project ImPACT has been named as one of the only parent-mediated interventions that meet criteria for the National Clearinghouse on Autism Evidence and Practice as an evidence-based practice.
Project ImPACT, (Improving Parents as Communication Teachers) is a parent education therapeutic program. This research-based program aims to teach parents of children with autism strategies to facilitate improved use of social engagement and language skills from their children.
The program is offered for children between the ages of 2 and 6 who are behind in their overall language skills. To participate, children must be diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder.
There are two options for program formatting: a 13-week program which includes a group learning component and a one-on-one learning component, or a 13-week individual course offered more selectively. At least one parent/guardian must attend and take part in each session. This program will be offered during the fall and spring semesters.
During the summer, a program for children ages 6-14 with a goal of social-skill building, called Social Climbers, is offered.
Jennifer Brodell, M.A., CCC-SLP
Clinical Assistant Professor
Stacy Robinson, M.S., CCC-SLP