Scaffolding sight vocabulary acquisition for children with autism using computer-assisted instruction
Cheng-Fang Huang, University of Washington, United States
University of Washington . Awarded
Autism represents a heterogeneous syndrome. Very limited study has examined how the impairment in cognitive, language, and social development impacted the acquisition of emergent literacy. This study investigated the efficacy of computer-assisted instruction (CAI) with teacher scaffolding as an intervention for children with autism to develop critical early reading skills. The progress of eight preschool children with autism was evaluated. The results suggested that the CAI was an effective means to deliver reading instruction when supplemented with teacher scaffolding. Such scaffolding was crucial in offering individualized support to meet the diverse needs of the children and to flexibly guide the children toward the higher development of the competence. The function of the teacher scaffolding, evolved from Wood, Bruner, and Ross (1976), included (1) simplifying the task to child's attainable level, (2) highlighting critical task features, (3) demonstrating solutions/reading practices, (4) maintaining goal direction, (5) controlling frustration with mouse operation, and (6) promoting child's interest in the task. When implementing CAI with children with autism, the teacher and the computer should complement each other to promote meaningful learning.
Huang, C.F. Scaffolding sight vocabulary acquisition for children with autism using computer-assisted instruction. Ph.D. thesis, University of Washington.
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