Teaching Social Thinking different to teaching social skills

Teaching students to 'keep their body in the group' and 'think with their eyes' will be explained at APAC15. US clinician, consultant, author, and public speaker Michelle Garcia Winner will define how Social Thinking is different from social skills and how social behaviour affects not only others' thoughts and feelings but how they react and respond directly to behaviour.

"Treatment professionals are being asked to develop treatment practices based on the research, when in reality, we have very few clinical studies that address the myriad of treatment needs our clients face on a daily basis," Michelle said.

"In my presentation I will describe how Social Thinking addresses this challenge by taking the best evidence available, knowledge from clinicians with extensive treatment experience and incorporating family-client values to develop treatment frameworks that guide intervention practices.

"Best practices in treatment planning for people with ASD require us to utilise information beyond what is published in clinical treatment studies.

"The components of social attention and why social observation precedes teaching students how to be less literal when interpreting language will also be explored," she said.

Michelle pioneered the concept of "Social Thinking" in the early 1990s to teach people with social challenges about the nuanced, and often confusing, realm of social learning and social problem solving that is not easily taught through typical behavioural methods.

She developed a treatment framework for individuals from preschool age through adult, basing her model on researched developmental and cognitive behavioural concepts and strategies.

She also illuminated the connection between social thinking and academic success, employment and adult success in life, taking social skills instruction beyond "friendships" and into all phases of academic, home, community, and personal life.

Social Thinking has been widely adopted in school districts and private practices across North America, and in select countries in North and South America, Australia, Europe and Asia.

Michelle Garcia Winner will present Social thinking strategies to manage social issues in daily life as part of Symposium 4 starting at 11:00am on Wednesday 9 September. She will present Social Thinking Theory and Research as part of the morning plenary from 10:00 to 10:30am on Thursday 10 September.

Early bird registrations close on Wednesday 15 July 2015 with concession rates available for people on the spectrum, parents/siblings/grandparents/foster carers and students as well as concession card holders.

View the full program here.

For more information on exhibiting, sponsoring the event or booking a delegate place at the conference visit www.apac15.org.au.

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Media inquiries: Jose Abad, 0403 930 380, 

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