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Efficacy of sensory and motor interventions for children with autism

by Baranek, G.T.

Baranek, G. (2002). Efficacy of sensory and motor interventions for children with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 32(5), 397-422.

The article has a three-fold purpose which is to 1) summarize empirical literature with respect to sensory and motor development/abnormalities in children with autism, 2) evaluate the scientific evidence of sensory and motor interventions used with children with autism, and 3) describe the implications of these findings.  The literature review found the area of sensory and motor development in children with autism as sparse in comparison with other areas of development.  A chart is provided within the article outlining the sensory and motor intervention studies included in the literature review.  The authors categorized the studies into larger subheadings and review the description, service delivery model and approach, and the empirical studies of each.  The categories of Sensory Integration Therapy (SI), Other Sensory Integration based approaches, Sensory Stimulation Techniques, Auditory Integration Training (AIT) and related Acoustic Interventions, visual therapies, Sensorimotor Handling Techniques, and physical exercise were explored. The authors provide recommendations for education based on their exploration of the above mentioned categories of intervention.