DISCLAIMER: All of the following articles are property of and written exclusively by the founders of ATSC, Dalia and Gary Shkedy.  

This Research and ATSC's upcoming Research is the culmination of over 25 years of Experience, hard work, and Learning. 

These papers have been viewed a combined 200,000+ times and have made a large impact in the autism and special needs community.

                         It is our hope that our continuing research will continue to make an impact and broaden the horizons

           of what is considered possible with special needs people!


Visual Communication Analysis (VCA): Implementing Self-Determination Theory and Research-based practices

 in Special Education Classrooms

Researchers found that through the use of VCA, children with various diagnoses of Autism Spectrum Disorder, Intellectual Disability, and/or Speech and Language Impairment were taught to type independently and thereby improved their learning and functional communication skills, while also showing significant decreases in maladaptive behaviors.

Visual Communication Analysis (VCA): Applying Self-Determination Theory and Research-based Practices to Autism

Per the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 31% of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are classified as intellectually disabled and between 25% and 50% of children with ASD do not develop functional verbal communication. This study was conducted to test the effectiveness of Visual Communication Analysis (VCA) as a method to teach communication and reduce maladaptive behaviors in non-verbal children with severe autism.

Early Intervention for an At-Risk 16-Month Old Using Visual Communication Analysis (VCA) Leads to Gifted Performance

Many developmental screeners focus heavily on receptive and expressive language skills, and the extent to which an infant can maneuver their environment. Research with young children typically involve motor skills, language, and occasionally simple procedural or problem solving tasks.

Treating Self-injurious Behaviors in Autism Spectrum Disorder

Self-injurious behaviors (SIBs) are “a class of behaviors, often highly repetitive and rhythmic, that result in physical harm to the individual displaying the behavior.” In the autistic population, SIBs are considered non-suicidal self-injurious behaviors, due to no apparent intent or willful self-harm. SIBs are highly prevalent in people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Long-term ABA Therapy Is Abusive: A Response to Gorycki, Ruppel, and Zane

In a recent response to a review of ABA literature, methodologies, and ethics, the authors of the response attempted to negate the compilation of research presented. The goal of their response was to advocate for the continued use of ABA and attempt to demonstrate that it is in fact effective in treating autism.

The Trauma of Broad-Based Inclusion for Students with Autism 

Inclusion is a model where students with disabilities spend most/all of their time in an educational setting with non-disabled students. This model has led many countries to pass laws requiring disabled students be educated in the least restrictive environment: they should be educated with students without disabilities to the maximum extent possible. However, this model ignores the very nature of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

How Much Compliance is too much Compliance: Is Long-Term ABA therapy Abuse?

This article discusses the prevalence of ASD with specific regard to the most ubiquitous current treatment, Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). A discussion of some of the issues with the underlying theory of ABA in its current application is conducted, especially with regard to “lower functioning” and nonverbal autistic individuals; namely, the curtailing of soothing “stimming” behaviors, operant conditioning, behaviorist principles that research has continued to prove it is not apt for usage with autistic individuals, as well as the unintended but damaging consequences, such as prompt dependency, psychological abuse and compliance that tend to pose high costs on former ABA students as they move into adulthood.