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Graduate School
Feb 24

Cultivating An Autism-Friendly Communication Style

Catherine Faherty Catherine Faherty

Event Description

Catherine Faherty's presentation introduces ideas and strategies for structuring the educational environment and adjusting your communication style to increase your student’s understanding and encourage authentic, expressive communication. Catherine Faherty asks us to consider ourselves as communication partners - whether we are teachers, assistants, therapists, or family members. She promotes the thinking that the autistic style of communicating is different from–not inferior nor superior to "the widespread, more familiar communication style that most neurotypical teachers, therapists, family and community members expect. Catherine proposes that we make “new agreements” about how to communicate; and consequently,how to interact.

Catherine Faherty, an authorized Social Stories instructor, taught a variety of students with diverse learning styles before creating a model classroom in 1985 for elementary" aged students with ASD. From 1990 to 2012 she worked as an autism specialist with the TEACCH program as a parent consultant; child and adult therapist; consultant to school programs; trainer of teachers and other professionals locally, nationally, and internationally; and helped to initiate and facilitate social groups for adults on the spectrum and support and education groups for parents and family members. She has written manuals used in TEACCH trainings, co"developed a multitude of training models, and is the author of three books, one of which was recognized as the Autism Society of America 2009 Outstanding Literary Work.

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