Thursday, April 27

December 2015 - AASEP Monitor

Table of Contents


  • Update from the U.S. Department Education
  • Assisted Therapy Dogs for Children with ASD
  • Buzz from the Hub
  • Intersection: Navigating the Road to Work
  • Legislative Announcements, Calls to Participate and New Projects
  • Upcoming Conferences and Events
  • Funding Forecast and Award Opportunities
  • Acknowledgements



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Looking at the presented graphs above and the expected score, the following results can be interpreted. Within the control group, in the tests given­ to teachers, the variables with the most significant changes were: social skills and social anxiety, they are selected as the most significant because they came closer to the expected results. In the graph presented above with the results of the tests in the control group given to parents, the most significant variables obtained were: aggression and social anxiety, this variables presented significant difference and came closer to the expected score.

While analyzing the graphs that present the results of the experimental group, we can see that the variables generally showed more noticeable chances and moved closer to the expected score. The tests applied to the teachers within the experimental group, showed also expected changes generally in the variables, therefore the variables that presented the most significant changes were: impulsivity, assertiveness and anxiety, these 3 came closer to the expected score. Finally the experimental group graph applied to parents, shows expected changes in all variables, but the variables with the most notorious and significant changes were: social skills, anxiety and impulsiveness, these 3 were the ones that came closer to the expected score. 

It can be concluded given the results above, how the group that received the dog assisted therapy was the one that showed the most significant changes in variables, and they showed a marked improvement in the average obtained, being closer to the expected scores.

Now the pre and post results of the Initial Language Test applied to both experimental and control group to teachers and parents will be presented, the raw scores and the ratios of oral language will be analyzed. <o:p></o:p>

Ratios of oral language (control group)<o:p></o:p>

Pre application<o:p></o:p>

Post application <o:p></o:p>















Ratios of oral language (experimental group)<o:p></o:p>

Pre application<o:p></o:p>

Post application<o:p></o:p>


62 <o:p></o:p>


97 <o:p></o:p>


67 <o:p></o:p>


111 <o:p></o:p>


63 <o:p></o:p>




97 <o:p></o:p>


By watching the graphs presented above concerning the raw score, the following may be interpreted. The results of the control group had a minimal difference in the pre and post evaluation, with negligible increase in the score of 4 students, the remaining 3 students obtained the same or lower score.

On the other hand in the graph of results of the experimental group it can be appreciated the noticeable difference in the general increase in raw score, where only one student remained with the same score and all the other students had an increase of 6 to 22 points. Thus indicating the success of the implementation of the dog assisted therapy.

As for the ratio of oral language, it can be observed in the presented tables that compare pre and post control groups scores, 5 students had a minimal increase (1 to 8 points) in the ratio scores, one student obtained the same score and one decreased it’s score. But nevertheless, in the experimental group scores a marked increase in the scores of 6 students (7 to 29 points) is observed, and only one student remained with the same score.

After analyzing the results of the research investigation the initial hypothesis of “Will dog assisted therapy be an appropriate and successful intervention as a complement in the treatment of students with ASD?” was checked and accepted because data between the comparison of the pre and post intervention between the different variables of communication and socialization show greater change to 0.05, this being statistically significant, using a confidence interval of 95% for the mean difference. That’s why within the research, the dog assisted therapy resulted beneficial for the students who attended interventions (experimental group). Over the course of the duration of the therapies it was established that the dog acted as a mediator between the student and the therapists, and made it easy to interact and communicate between both parts, creating an optimal environment for learning. Moreover, students with ASD welcomed the therapy dog; and within sessions the students showed excitement and motivation to participate with their peers in the activities.

The students’ response towards the therapy dog and the activities within the intervention was better than it was expected. It’s considered that part of the success of the application of dog assisted therapy goes beyond the mere novelty of it, because throughout the sessions we used active participatory methodologies with plenty of concrete and didactic materials to capture the student’s attention. We also took into consideration the own characteristics of ASD to make the sessions friendlier and reduce the student’s anxiety as minimal as possible.

For future applications, it’s recommended that animal-assisted therapies are conducted five days a week, which in this case was not possible due to scheduled sessions in Instituto ARENA, it is also considered important for the sessions to last at least 6 months to really get to appreciate the changes in student performance. <o:p></o:p>




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