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Social narratives are visually represented stories that describe social situations and socially appropriate responses or behaviors to help individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) understand social situations in a new way and to help them to acquire and use appropriate social skills. The term social narratives may be defined as a specific strategy (see guidelines below) but also as a group of additional interventions that are similar in that they address social understanding but differ in the specific procedures utilized. In this module we will first describe the specific ten-step strategy to creating social narratives that address a specific behavior concern. We will then provide a brief overview of other social narrative strategies.

Estimated Time to Complete: 1 hour

  • What's Included
  • 21 pages
  • Pre/post-assessments
  • Optional $10 certficate
  1. Identify various social narratives that can be created to help individuals with ASD improve their social skills by learning to process social situations, avoid repeated social errors, and increase pro-social behaviors
  2. Describe user-friendly examples of social narratives, Power Cards, and cartooning that can be used in school, home, work, and community settings
  3. Identify resources to assist in developing a variety of social narratives
  4. Define terminology related to social narratives and related strategies

Module Authors

Ruth Aspy, Ph.D.

Ruth Aspy, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist who specializes in assessment and intervention for individuals with autism spectrum disorders. She is co-creator of a comprehensive model of intervention. Along with Dr. Barry Grossman, Dr. Aspy has written The Ziggurat Model, winner of the 2008 Autism Society of America Award for literary book of the year. Dr. Aspy speaks internationally. She has experience in both clinical and school settings. Dr. Aspy has facilitated in the establishment of innovative training programs for parents of children with ASD.

Annette Wragge, M.S.

Annette Wragge is the State Coordinator for Nebraska's Autism Spectrum Disorders Network. Annette received her Masters Degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She provides consultation services to school districts across Southeast Nebraska on designing effective programs for students with ASD. Annette also organizes and provides training opportunities to support the needs of teachers, administrators and parents of children with ASD. She has presented locally and nationally on topics related to Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Module Contributors

National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders

The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder (NPDC) was funded by the Office of Special Education Programs in the US Department of Education from 2007-2014. The work of the NPDC was a collaboration among three universities-the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and the MIND Institute, University of California-Davis. The goal of the NPDC was to promote the use of evidence-based practices (EBPs) for children and youth with ASD, birth to 22 years of age.

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