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Title:Educating the educator: delivering sexuality education to individuals with autism spectrum disorder
Author(s):Curtiss, Sarah
Advisor(s):Ebata, Aaron T.
Department / Program:Human & Community Development
Discipline:Human & Community Development
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Autism Spectrum Disorder
Sexuality Education
Abstract:Within the context of human sexuality, when individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) have sexual thoughts, feelings, and desires, they are experiencing a profoundly normal part of human development. Unfortunately, professionals are not always prepared for individuals with ASD to be so normal. Professionals need support in becoming sexuality educators ready to meet the specific needs of individuals with ASD. In this study, we examined the practices of current sexuality educators in terms of the contexts of their instruction, the content and teaching methods they used and the climate for providing sexuality education. We also examined the outcomes of face-to-face training and online, ongoing support in terms of changes in attitudes, values, and the degree to which participants spent more time participating in professional development activities. Finally, we examined whether the outcomes were moderated by how ongoing support was delivered online (through randomly assigning participants to receive email or Facebook updates for one month following the workshop). Participants in the program were more likely to seek additional knowledge, collaborate with other educators, and report that they felt more ready to teach human sexuality to individuals with ASD. These outcomes were the same for both email and Facebook treatment conditions. Implications for professional development are discussed.
Issue Date:2013-05-24
Rights Information:Copyright 2013 Sarah Curtiss
Date Available in IDEALS:2013-05-24
Date Deposited:2013-05

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