A Must-See Video for Professionals Who Serve Individuals with Autism
Temple Grandin, Ph.D., spoke with Jann Leppien, Ph.D., of Whitworth University about autism. During the 23-minute interview, which is posted on youtube in two parts, Dr. Grandin discusses how to help individuals with autism, her book called The Autistic Brain, challenges and successes with autism, and much more. Dr. Grandin gives valuable guidance for school psychologists, teachers and other special education professionals who serve students with autism.
How to Help Individuals with Autism
To help those with autism, Dr. Grandin says to:
- Focus on what they are good at and build on it
- Teach manners and social interaction in a systematic way
- Make space for creativity, drawing, experimentation, etc.
- Encourage membership in organizations like 4H, computer club, choir, etc.
- Find friends who share interests
- Teach work ethic and work skills
- Use teachable moments, coach and demonstrate social skills during projects
- Avoid overgeneralization and oversimplification
- To discourage behavior problems, focus on areas of strength
Topics Covered in The Autistic Brain
During the interview, Dr. Grandin is asked about her book The Autistic Brain. In the book, she covers:
- Her own experience with autism
- Types of thinking and different mindsets
- Misconceptions about autism
- Advancements in neuroimaging and genetic research
- Ways to help those with autism
Autism Challenges and Successes
Throughout the remainder of the interview, Dr. Grandin discusses challenges with autism, including doctors debating and changing diagnostic labels. This, Dr. Grandin says, has created a vast spectrum that can cause additional challenges for higher functioning individuals with autism. She also discusses her ideal day, her career accomplishments, working with graduate students, lecturing, research, mentorship and more.
About Temple Grandin
Dr. Grandin has autism and did not speak until age three. Today, she is an author, professor and speaker on autism and animal behavior. She revolutionized the livestock industry, designing more humane conditions for handling animals. Half of the cattle in the nation are handled in facilities designed by Dr. Temple Grandin.