Strengths-Based Teaching Guidelines

By Therapy Focus

Many students with autism who attend mainstream schools often have negative school experiences. Researchers at Curtin University propose to use a strength-based approach, which focuses on the things the students like to do according to what they are best at. The project will involve developing and evaluating practice guidelines to support teachers of students on the autism spectrum in mainstream classrooms to apply the strength-based approach in STEAM-related subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics).

Who can take part?

We need your help if you are:

  • Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and currently in high school, or have left high-school within the last 5 years
  • A parent of a young person with autism who is currently in high school or has left high-school within the last 5 years
  • A high school staff member who is currently teaching or has taught at least one student with autism

What will I have to do?

  • Read an Information package. Before coming to a focus group or interview, you will be provided with an information package. In the package, you will find an information sheet about this project, a consent form and a short questionnaire about your personal information, which you will complete before coming to an interview or focus group.
  • Participate in a 60-90 minute focus group or a 45-60 minute interview. The questions will focus on what you think about factors that contribute to successful strength-based practice and positive relationships with students on the autism spectrum at high school. The focus group will be a small group of 4 to 8 people and the interview will be individual.
  • If you are school staff, you have the option to participate by completing an online survey or a focus group or an individual interview.

What are the benefits of being part of this project?

There may be no direct benefit to you from participating in this research, but we hope that the results will support teachers in STEAM-related areas to apply the strength-based practise when teaching students on the autism spectrum in high school. It will enable high students on the autism spectrum to use their strengths and interests to build academic and social skills, enhance their self-determination through collaboration with their peers and teachers. There is no cost to you participating in this project, and you will not be paid for participating in this project.

If you are interested or would like more information, please contact:

Jia White
Email: [email protected]
Mobile: 0425 472 123

Dr Melissa Black
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (08) 9266 3749