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SCERTS Part 1: A Comprehensive Educational Framework for Autism

presented by Amy Laurent, Barry M. Prizant, and Emily Rubin

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Disclosure Statement:

Financial:  Barry M. Prizant receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. Barry M. Prizant receives royalties from Brookes Publishing and compensation from Simon & Schuster Publishing.


 Non-Financial: Barry M. Prizant in on the advisory board for the Center for Neurodiversity, Shrub Oak International School, and The Miracle Project . He is an adjunct professor at Brown University.

Financial:  Emily Rubin receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. Emily Rubin receives royalties from Brookes Publishing and compensation from Marcus Autism Center.


 Non-Financial: Emily Rubin has no competing non-financial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Financial:  Amy Laurent receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. Amy Laurent receives royalties from Brookes Publishing. She is an employee and adjunct faculty member at the University of Rhode Island.


 Non-Financial: Amy Laurent is the Vice President of the Board for Bailey's Team for Autism .

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

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Accreditation Check:
This course introduces the SCERTS Model, an evidence-based, comprehensive, multidisciplinary educational approach and framework designed for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and related disabilities. Participants will learn about the core values and guiding principles underlying practice in the SCERTS Model. The neurodevelopmental basis of social development is reviewed as a foundation for identifying highest priority goals and objectives, and the three domains of SCERTS - Social Communication, Emotional Regulation, and Transactional Support are introduced. Participants are also introduced to observation and action planning within the SCERTS Model.

Meet Your Instructors

Amy Laurent, PhD, OTR/L

Amy Laurent, Ph.D., OTR/L is a developmental psychologist and a registered pediatric occupational therapist. Currently in private practice, Amy specializes in the education of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and related developmental disabilities. The majority of Amy’s work involves collaborating with and supporting early intervention teams, school teams, and families. Her consultative services focus…

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Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP

Barry M. Prizant, Ph.D., CCC-SLP has more than 40 years experience as a clinical scholar, consultant, researcher and program consultant to children and older persons with Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and related developmental disabilities and their families. He is both the Director of Childhood Communication Services (CCS), a private practice, and an Adjunct Professor in…

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Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP

Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP is the Director of the Educational Outreach Program at the Marcus Autism Center in Atlanta, GA, an affiliate of Emory University and an NIH Autism Center of Excellence. She is a speech-language pathologist specializing in autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, and related social learning disabilities. As a former adjunct faculty member and lecturer…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. Introduction

This chapter identifies the three domains of The SCERTS Model, and the core values and guiding principles underlying practice in SCERTS. Characteristics of SCERTS are explained as to how they address the need for a comprehensive educational approach in autism.

2. Social Neurodevelopment

Chapter two emphasizes that an understanding of autism is gained from the “inside out.” Current research in the neurodevelopmental basis of social development is reviewed along with the core challenges faced by individuals with autism at different stages. This provides a foundation for identifying the highest priority goals and objectives for individuals who are before words, emerging language, or conversational.

3. SC, ER, and TS domains

This chapter highlights the relationships among the domains of social communication, emotional regulation, and transactional support. Each of these domains, which present challenges to individuals with ASD and their partners, has an impact on an individual’s overall social communicative competence. SCERTS prioritizes intervention in each of these domains to support participation in daily activities and meaningful relationships.

4. Applying the SCERTS Practice Principles

Chapter four introduces the SCERTS Observation and Action Planning checklist as a tool for efficiently implementing transactional support in everyday activities. A video case example of a student in a classroom setting will be reviewed to illustrate how to use this tool can be used to identify what is already working and possible next steps.

More Courses in this Series

SCERTS Part 2: The Social Communication Domain

Presented by Amy Laurent, PhD, OTR/L, Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP, and Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP

SCERTS Part 2: The Social Communication Domain

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
Part two of this seven part series introduces the first domain of the SCERTS Model, Social Communication (SC). Participants will learn about SC as a core challenge for individuals diagnosed with ASD and how these challenges differ depending upon developmental stage, i.e., the Social Partner, the Language Partner, and the Conversational Partner. The neurodevelopmental basis of social communication is reviewed, as are the capacities of joint attention – why we communicate and symbol use – how we communicate. Participants are also introduced to critical transactional supports for each developmental stage – how we can help others communicate. Sample objectives used to address those challenges are also presented.

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SCERTS Part 3: The Emotional Regulation Domain

Presented by Amy Laurent, PhD, OTR/L, Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP, and Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP

SCERTS Part 3: The Emotional Regulation Domain

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
The third course in this seven course series introduces the second domain of the SCERTS Model, Emotional Regulation (ER). Participants will learn about ER as a core challenge for individuals diagnosed with ASD. The developmental basis of emotional regulation is reviewed, as are the capacities of self-regulation and mutual regulation. Contrasts to traditional behavior management practices are made. Participants are also introduced common ER challenges at various stages of development. Sample objectives and Transactional Supports used to address those challenges within the SCERTS Model are also presented.

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SCERTS Part 4: The Transactional Support Domain

Presented by Amy Laurent, PhD, OTR/L, Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP, and Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP

SCERTS Part 4: The Transactional Support Domain

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
Course four in this seven part series introduces the fourth domain of the SCERTS Model, Transactional Support (TS). Participants will learn about the influence of communicative partners’ interactive styles on the social communicative competence of individuals diagnosed with ASD. Learning supports (LS) and Interpersonal Supports (IS) designed to support active engagement for individuals with ASD are introduced within the context of the SCERTS curriculum. Targeted use of LS and IS by partners are discussed in regards to key goals and developmental appropriateness. Finally, procedures for determining developmental stage of individuals with ASD are introduced, as are observational tools useful for program planning.

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SCERTS Part 5: Getting Started with Implementation

Presented by Amy Laurent, PhD, OTR/L, Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP, and Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP

SCERTS Part 5: Getting Started with Implementation

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
Course five addresses the process of systematically planning to embed target objectives within everyday activities, namely SCERTS in Action. First, the SCERTS Planning Grid is introduced as an essential component for ensuring transactional supports are implemented across the day. Next, a case study will be introduced to illustrate how to implement the tools presented in Course 4 along with the SCERTS Planning Grid allow us to “get started” with implementation by determining a child’s developmental stage, identifying “what’s working” with respect to TS, and identifying next steps in SC and ER.

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SCERTS Part 6: The SCERTS Assessment Process (SAP)

Presented by Amy Laurent, PhD, OTR/L, Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP, and Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP

SCERTS Part 6: The SCERTS Assessment Process (SAP)

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
Course six introduces the 10-step SCERTS Assessment Process (SAP). This tool is designed to determine an individual’s stage of language acquisition, establish a profile of strengths and areas of need in those areas most impacted by the core challenges of autism, and to monitor progress over time using data gathered in everyday activities to represent a measurement of authentic progress. The course will begin with a discussion of why and when to implement the SAP and how to gather meaningful data in everyday situations. Next, a video-based case example will be introduced so that participants can see how to administer each of the 10 steps.

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SCERTS Part 7: Program Planning with Families and Educational Teams

Presented by Amy Laurent, PhD, OTR/L, Barry M. Prizant, PhD, CCC-SLP, and Emily Rubin, MS, CCC-SLP

SCERTS Part 7: Program Planning with Families and Educational Teams

Subscribe now, and access clinical education and patient education—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.
The seventh and final part of this series addresses components of Transactional Support that are essential to allow all members of a child’s team, parents, family members, professionals, and other service providers to feel supported and engaged in programmatic efforts. Family Support Plans are described for educational and emotional support for family members and service providers with specific examples of activities. Issues related to successful implementation of SCERTS are also addressed, with a discussion of programmatic practices that allow SCERTS to be adopted and implemented with greater success. Finally, the current status of SCERTS as a comprehensive approach and future directions for SCERTS are discussed.

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