Dr Trevor Clark

Dr Trevor Clark is National Director, Aspect Education, Autism Spectrum Australia (Aspect) and Adjunct Associate Professor, Griffith Institute for Educational Research, Griffith University.

Trevor is a special educator with a comprehensive experience and knowledge of educational programs and service provision for students with autism spectrum disorders as a result of 30 years in the field in New Zealand, England and Australia. He completed his PhD in autism which involved a curriculum designed to make functional use of savant and splinter skills in children with autism. He is currently responsible for the Aspect schools program (8 schools, 115 satellite classes with student enrolment of 1014 students with ASD) and is also the senior consultant to the Aspect Research Program. He presents nationally and internationally on education and research in ASDs. Trevor is the co-author of A Practical Guide for Teachers of Students with an Autism Spectrum Disorder in Secondary Education and is currently writing a book for Routledge UK based on his PhD thesis entitled Exploring Giftedness and Autism - study of a differentiated program for autistic savants.

Trevor will present on Day 1 in Symposium 2 - Education - Current Research on developing ASD friendly schools.

Bridging the Research to Practice Gap - a snapshot of Aspect's new education research trials and evidence-based approach to the education of students with autism: Aspect has eight autism-specific schools with 115 satellite classes located in government and non-government mainstream schools throughout NSW and a current student enrolment of 1014. The model of education in these schools is called the Aspect Comprehensive Approach for Education (ACAE). The major focus of the ACAE is transition to the more inclusive educational settings when the student and family is ready. In 2014, 195 Aspect students transitioned to other educational settings with 145 moving into mainstream classes.

Aspect's evidence-based educational program is helping many students to achieve positive learning and adaptive outcomes. Much of the success of the ACAE can be attributed to the education evaluation model (ASDEE) - a workflow model that encompasses a step-by-step process from idea to classroom implementation that allows for research into effective education practices for students with ASD.

Using this model, the ACAE is constantly reviewed and evaluated. Educational interventions and support processes and devices undergo a series of evidence-based trials and evaluations before they are implemented into Aspect classes and then included into the ACAE curriculum manual. Some of these new interventions if found to be effective may be further developed as Aspect Practice Model Classes. Model classes involve specialist staff and associated resources that are then used to demonstrate these interventions to others, both internally and externally and currently include - Structured Teaching, Training, Secret Agent Society, Language Acquisition Through Motor Planning, iPads for teaching and learning, the ACAE (whole approach).

An overview of the most recent review of the ACAE, new elements and new research trials and evaluations will be outlined along with Aspect's new BIG IDEA for EDUCATION.

Also presenting in this Symposium:
Dr Liz Pellicano
Prof Jacqui Roberts
Prof Vicki Bitsika