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Intensive Interaction in the mainstream classroom: evaluating staff attitudes towards an inclusive socio-communicative intervention

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This study addressed the effective, ethical inclusion of pupils with autism, aged 5 to 7 years, in mainstream education. It evaluated a group intervention designed to enable both class teachers and teaching assistants to use Intensive Interaction daily within the classroom. A multi-strategy approach was used, which included structured observations, focus groups and questionnaires. Data analysis showed that pupils and staff enjoyed the intervention and that it was effective in developing their relationships and social communication. However, it was found to be impractical due to staff busyness in response to the demands of the National Curriculum. The study concluded that changes are needed in the preparedness, deployment and practice of staff to create communication enabling classroom environments. A pedagogical style that combines reciprocal responsiveness with intrinsically motivating learning activities for all children was recommended, within a more flexible approach to the National Curriculum, in preference to additional interventions for children with autism.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2015

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  • Good Autism Practice is dedicated solely to promoting good practice with children and adults with autism and Asperger's syndrome.
    Each journal includes articles:
    • encouraging good and innovative practice
    • written by practitioners, academics, parents and people with autism
    The journal is edited by highly respected academics and practitioners specialising in autistic spectrum conditions and will be of interest to parents and practitioners in health, education and social services, as well as people who have autistic spectrum conditions.
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