Christopher Bloh

, Kutztown University, United States of America
Title : Increasing communication for students with visual impairments and developmental disabilities

Abstract

Research in the area of communication skills for students with autism and/or developmental disabilities existing concurrently with visual impairments is limited. There currently exist limited evidence-based practices to guide the child’s instructional team on which communication devices work best or how to adapt communication devices to ensure accessibility for both the visual impairment and developmental disability.  An alternating treatment design and a final best-treatment-only condition was implemented to examine the rate of acquisition of independent requesting for an adapted Picture Exchange Communication Systems (PECS) compared to a speech-generating device (SGD) as an iPad (SoundingBoard application) among four early-childhood students with combined visual impairments and other disabilities.  Results suggested that all participants’ independent responding increased with all four responding more independently using the SGD.  Limitations of the present study and future research are discussed.  

Biography

Christopher Bloh holds a B.A. in Anthropology, an Ed.M. in Special Education, an Ed.M. in Educational Psychology, and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Temple University. He is also a Board Certified Behavior Analyst who provides classroom consultation in behavior management and differentiating instruction. Before arriving at Kutztown University, Dr. Bloh taught students with autism and those with physical and cognitive disabilities in Philadelphia. His areas of research interest include classroom and behavior management through applied behavior analysis and the increase in communication for people with autism using verbal behavior.