Organization for Autism Research

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Resources

Life Journey through Autism Series

 

OAR has published seven Life Journey guidebooks and The Best of The OARacle to date.  You can read their descriptions, preview each online, or download copies at no cost below.  They are also available in hard copy for a donation of $5.00 per copy.  To order, please visit OAR's shopping cart.

OAR's publications to date include:

See OAR's Reproduction Policy below.

 

A Guide to Safety

No parental instinct is as intense and fundamental as protecting one’s child from harm. For parents of children with autism, safety risks become magnified because of challenges resulting from fixations with narrow interests, limited situational awareness, and sensory and communication issues. So why should parents expect to do it all alone?

A Guide to Safety was written by parents, first responders, educators, and community members who share their strategies and resources to address safety threats that commonly arise during childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. This tool will educate parents about how to prevent and mitigate emergency events, safety threats that may affect their child in the future, and how to teach safety habits that will build a foundation for safety in adulthood.

A Guide to Safety covers a range of topics, including:

  • Safety network development
  • Prevention and management of wandering and elopement behaviors
  • Relationship, physical, and sexual safety discussions
  • Strategies to address bullying and online threats
  • Tips on money and workplace safety

It also includes sample identification documents, advice from an adult self-advocate, evidence-based safety skills lesson plans, and more.

The guide can be used independently or as a supplement to a pre-existing safety plan. It is also an excellent tool for developing first responder training programs.

To pre-order a hard copy, e-mail programs@researchautism.org with the subject "Safety Guide". Be sure to include your name, mailing address, and purpose of use (if not a parent). Hard copies will be released no later than January 15, 2015.

 

 Download A Guide to Safety (4.7 MB)

 To download, right click on the above link and choose "Save Target

 As" to save the guide to your computer. You will need the Adobe

 Acrobat Reader to view the guide.

 

 

 

 

 

A Parent’s Guide to Research

Having a child diagnosed within the autism spectrum presents a series of immediate challenges for parents. Trying to understand a complex, spectrum disorder like autism, which encompasses classic autism, Asperger Disorder, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder- Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS), is difficult enough in a purely academic setting. When parents are confronted with the shock of an autism diagnosis for their child, combined with the responsibility to try to make the right treatment choices as soon as possible, critical decisions become extremely difficult. And even well-intentioned but not fully informed people sometimes pursue unverified and possibly dangerous treatment alternatives based on unreliable information from web sites, hearsay, and the media.

OAR addresses this situation through the creation of a basic primer on autism research for use as a reference by parents. A Parent’s Guide to Research includes a glossary of terms, an overview of scientific research, how to determine if a particular study may or may not be pertinent to a particular child, and questions to ask with respect to treatments, therapies, and other methodologies under consideration. The Guide is currently available as a publication as well as a downloadable document on this web site. OAR provides the Guide at no cost to parents and families affected by autism, that is, those who have a child diagnosed on the autism spectrum.

If you are interested in obtaining a copy of the Guide, please visit OAR's shopping cart. To download the guide, click the cover below.

Cover of Parents GuideDownload A Parent's Guide to Research (1.8 MB)
To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

To view this guide in Spanish, click here.

 

 

 

An Educator’s Guide to Autism

An Educator’s Guide to Autism, the second book in the Life Journey through Autism series of resource guides published by the Organization for Autism Research provides parents, teachers and education professionals with a plan for teaching a child with autism in the general elementary classroom setting.

The heart of An Educator’s Guide to Autism is a six-step approach for a teacher preparing to teach a child with autism in his or her classroom. The steps include the following: (1) educate yourself (2) reach out to parents (3) prepare the classroom (4) educate peers and set social goals (5) collaborate on the implementation of an educational program and (6) manage behavioral challenges. The discussion of each step includes practical tips on what a teacher should look for and how to navigate the challenges that may arise. Following these steps offers the teacher the potential to create the most favorable educational environment for all learners in the classroom, including the student with autism.

If you are interested in obtaining a copy of the Guide, please visit OAR's shopping cart. To download the guide, click the cover below.

Cover of Educator's GuideDownload An Educator’s Guide to Autism
To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

To view this guide in Spanish, click here.

 

 

 

An Educator’s Guide to Asperger Syndrome

An Educator’s Guide to Asperger Syndrome is the third book in the Life Journey Through Autism resource guide series.  Asperger Syndrome is a complex disorder that presents numerous challenges within the inclusive classroom setting.   This book provides guidelines for meeting the needs of the student with Asperger Syndrome in your class, from elementary to high school.  Specifically, the Guidebook contains information on

  • Understanding the common characteristics of Asperger Syndrome and how they affect each child on a case by case basis
  • Promoting positive social goals and educating peers to avoid bullying
  • Cooperating with the parents and student’s IEP team
  • Implementing strategies to better facilitate learning in the student with Asperger Syndrome.

If you are interested in obtaining a copy of the Guide, please visit OAR's shopping cart. To download the guide, click the cover below.

Cover of Educator's Gudie to Asperger
Download An Educator’s Guide to Asperger Syndrome

To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

To view this guide in Spanish, click here.

 

 

 

A Guide for Transition to Adulthood

Adulthood is more than just a chronological state. Adulthood represents a time in one's life where there are increased levels of independence, choice, responsibility, and personal control. Adulthood is the defining period of one's life and, while we may look back fondly on our childhood, it is our accomplishments as adults for which we are generally most proud. Why, then, should adulthood for the person with an autism spectrum disorder be viewed any differently? In this, the fourth volume in the OAR Life Journey Through Autism series, we provide an overview of the Transition-to-Adulthood process, with an emphasis on:  

  • The importance of early planning beginning no later than age 16 years and, at times, as early as age 14 years (or younger).
  • The importance of collaboration between the transitioning individual, their family and friends, interested community members, the schools' professional staff, and representatives from adult service systerms in the transition to adulthood process.
  • The importance of community-based instruction in the development of skills associated with a more independent adulthood.
  • The fact that individualized, effective transition planning is effortful and time consuming but, when done well, a fulfilling life as an adult is possible.

If you are interested in obtaining a copy of the Guide, please visit OAR's shopping cart. To download the guide, click the cover below.

Cover of Transition Guide
Download A Guide for Transition to Adulthood

To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

To view this guide in Spanish, click here.

 

 

 

Understanding Autism: An Employer's Guide

In addition, OAR collaborated with the District of Columbia Public Schools to produce a short resource entitled Understanding Autism: An Employer’s Guide to help front line supervisors support their employees with autism. Click here to download the guide.

 

 

 

A Parent's Guide to Assessment

The formal assessment process can be a daunting experience for parents of children newly diagnosed with autism. By using highly technical language and focusing on “deficit performance,” assessments can often overwhelm and dishearten parents. In addition, outcomes are rarely explained in terms that parents can use to set goals for their children. This new Parent’s Guide to Assessment will serve to provide the tools to better understand the assessment process and, subsequently, utilize assessment outcomes to improve services and interventions for their children.

Among the topics covered in the Assessment guide will be:

  • The strengths and weaknesses of the assessment process
  • The technical language contained in the reports
  • Who is qualified to complete an assessment
  • What specific assessment tools measure
  • How to interpret the results in a way that informs proactive, individual decision making

If you are interested in obtaining a copy of the Guide, please visit OAR's shopping cart. To download the guide, click the cover below.

Assessment Guide
Download A Parent's Guide to Assessment

To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

 

 

 

 

A Guide for Military Families

Military sources indicate that more than 13,000 military dependents, the majority of them children, have some form of autism. Their families face all the emotions and challenges that accompany having a child diagnosed with autism, compounded by the realities of military service: war, extended family separation, frequent moves, varying access to specialized healthcare, and other stressors that complicate and often work against effective treatment for children with autism. These families need help navigating these uncharted and difficult waters.

This Guide and its companion Web site (www.operationautismonline.org) are designed for these families. The purpose of these resources is to give each family the tools and access to information that it needs on its unique life journey through autism. More specifically, the goals of this Guide are to provide:

  • An understanding of autism and related intervention and treatment
  • Strategies for addressing the challenges of autism from the time of diagnosis
    through adulthood
  • An overview of the Department of Defense (DoD) and service policies related
    to having a child with autism
  • Information on autism treatment options and coverage within the military
    healthcare system
  • Practical information and tools to guide your child’s education
  • Tips and advice relative to transitions such as permanent change of station (PCS) moves, new schools and more
  • Links to additional resources relative to autism and military families

OAR offers print copies of this guide free of charge to parents in the military and DoD employees (one copy per family, please). To take advantage of this offer, go to the Operation Autism Web site located at http://www.operationautismonline.org/about-operation-autism/contact-us. Be sure to specify your interest in A Guide for Military Families and include your affiliation and rank, as well as the address to which you would like the book mailed.

All others interested in obtaining a copy, please visit OAR's shopping cart.



Download A Guide for Military Families
(2.7 MB)

To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

 

 

 

 

Navigating the Special Education System

As the number of children being diagnosed on the spectrum continues to increase, more children with autism are attending public school than ever before. Many teachers, administrators, and school support staff lack the background and training to meet the unique needs of students with autism. It falls to the parents to make sure that their child’s challenges, whether with social interactions, communication, or behavior, are addressed with research-based interventions within the school setting. To assure this, parents must have a basic understanding of special education services, their child’s rights, and their own.

This Guide is designed as a resource for parents. Its purpose is to give each family the information and tools needed to successfully navigate the education system anywhere in the country. More specifically, it offers:

  • Background on special education in the United States
  • An understanding of the laws and regulations about special education
  • An overview of the timeline of services
  • A detailed explanation of Individualized Education Programs (IEPs)
  • Tips and techniques for being an effective advocate
  • Sources and links that will help you identify specific state resources and find more in-depth information
  • Lists and definitions of terms that are frequently used in school systems


Download Navigating the Special Education System

To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

 

 

 

 

The Best of the OARacle

Selected Articles from 2002-2007

This publication includes the best of The OARacle’s research articles, all collected in one volume and categorized for easy reference.

If you are interested in obtaining a copy of the Guide, please visit OAR's shopping cart. To download the guide, click the cover below.

The Best of the OARacle cover

 

Download The Best of the OARacle

To download right click on the above link and choose "Save Target As" to save the guide to your PC. You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the Guide.

 

 

 

Reproduction Policy:

These guidebooks are available for use by all those whose lives are affected by autism. In keeping with OAR's mission, the information included in these books may be utilized for personal use, teaching, research, for IEP meetings or any other capacity in order to facilitate the dissemination of information. You may reproduce (print, make photocopies, or download) these materials without prior permission for non-commercial purposes. If used professionally, OAR asks that the you provide proper attribution of the source in all copies.

For other uses of materials, please contact OAR at info@researchautism.org.