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J Autism Dev Disord. 2018 Jun;48(6):2224-2230. doi: 10.1007/s10803-017-3435-3.

Brief Report: Improving Social Outcomes for Students with Autism at Recess Through Peer-Mediated Pivotal Response Training.

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Crane Center for Early Childhood Education and Policy, Ohio State University, 334 PAES Building, 305 West 17th Avenue, Columbus, OH, 43210, USA.
Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA.


Many students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) struggle to appropriately interact and play with their peers at recess. In this pilot feasibility study, we tested the efficacy of practitioner-implemented, peer-mediated Pivotal Response Training (PRT) with 11 elementary and middle school students with ASD. Participants were randomly assigned to a treatment or control group. We measured outcomes at multiple time points, and analyzed data using multi-level modeling with time nested within student. We demonstrated large and statistically significant increases in peer interaction (dā€‰=ā€‰1.13). Appropriate play with peers also increased substantially (dā€‰=ā€‰0.89). Practitioners and students provided positive feedback. These findings suggest school staff can feasibly facilitate peer-implemented PRT that improves social outcomes for students with ASD at recess.


Autism; Inclusion; Peer interactions; Peer play; Peer-mediated intervention; Pivotal response training

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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