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Behavioral Intervention in Autism: Practitioner Skills

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 2R42HD050160-02
Agency Tracking Number: HD050160
Amount: $1,045,220.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: PHS2009-2
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2009
Award Year: 2009
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
PRAXIS, INC. 13 WEST STREET
BELMONT, MA 02478
United States
DUNS: 137091000
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 CHARLES HAMAD
 (781) 642-0048
 CHARLES.HAMAD@UMASSMED.EDU
Business Contact
 CHARLES HAMAD
Phone: (781) 893-9436
Email: chamad@praxisnetlearning.com
Research Institution
 UNIV OF MASSACHUSETTS MED SCH WORCESTER
 
55 LAKE AVENUE NORTH
WORCESTER, MA 1655
United States

 Nonprofit College or University
Abstract

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a complex neurological disorder that typically appears before the age of three and immediately and profoundly affects a young child's ability to communicate, develop language, form social relationships and respond appropriately to environmental cues. Whereas all children with developmental disabilities receive some form of federally mandated Early Intervention, demands are being placed on parents and early intervention staff to provide what has been referred to as early intensive behavioral intervention (BI). BI is a consensus best practice scientific treatment methodology derived from the field of Applied Behavior Analysis, that focuses on providing rigorous and sustained one-to-one and natural-context treatment to teach developmental skills such as attending, imitation, receptive language, expressive language, pre-academic social and self-help skills. After being endorsed by several states, the Surgeon General of the United States and professional organizations such as the American Psychological Association, American Association on Mental Retardation, American Academy of Pediatrics, National Research Council, and the American Psychiatric Association, demand for BI providers has grown beyond what university and ASD service organizations can now provide. As a means of increasing the availability of BI training resources, Praxis, Inc., a small health care software development company that specializes in programs for children with developmental disabilities, in partnership with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, proposes to develop, implement, and evaluate web-based distance learning modules for teaching relevant BI practitioner skills. The project has three major objectives: (1) to develop curriculum materials that can be used for web-based instruction, (2) to develop a commercially viable software prototype, and (3) to evaluate the resulting program to determine the usability of the software and the effectiveness of the curriculum in teaching requisite competencies. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: The proposed project and the resulting product will directly benefit individuals who provide behavioral intervention services to children with autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities. The project has three major objectives: (1) to develop curriculum materials that can be used for web-based instruction, (2) to develop a commercially viable software prototype, and (3) to evaluate the resulting program to determine the usability of the software and the effectiveness of the curriculum in teaching practitioner skills to parents, family members, paraprofessionals, and aides who require more basic-level training in order to carry out specific evidence-based BI protocols.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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