In the ever-changing, wide-ranging, often overwhelming, and profoundly individualized realm of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC), all stakeholders need a wealth of knowledge and a toolbox filled with resources. New Discoveries is a series highlighting resources (some new/new to you, some you may have forgotten about) that might be of interest and use. We encourage you to explore and judge for yourself which to add to your toolbox.
Resource to Explore: National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder (NPDC)
What is the National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder?
According to their website, "The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder (NPDC) was funded by the Office of Special Education Programs in the US Department of Education from 2007-2014. The work of the NPDC was a collaboration among three universities—the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and the MIND Institute, University of California-Davis. The goal of the NPDC was to promote the use of evidence-based practices (EBPs) for children and youth with ASD, birth to 22 years of age."
Why should I consider checking it out?
- It is completely free! To everyone!
- Access information on the 27 identified evidence-based practices. For free! Including:
- Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)
- Speech-Generating Devices (now included in the Technology-aided Instruction and Intervention module)
- Free professional resources for teachers, therapists, and technical assistance providers who work with individuals with ASD, including detailed information on how to plan, implement, and monitor specific evidence-based practices.
- Option to earn free professional development certificates for modules taken via AFIRM (see below).
Where can I learn more?
You can find a list of all identified evidence-based practices for children/youth with ASD on the NPDC website HERE. Most are hyperlinked to additional (free) content on the Autism Focused Intervention Resources & Modules (AFIRM) website. You will need to create a free account to access the AFIRM modules - but it's FREE and provides you guidance on the application of evidence-based practices.
You can read other posts in our New Discoveries series by clicking HERE.