Online resource helps individuals with autism be successful in the workforce.
Do2Learn.com, an innovative, online provider of educational resources for individuals with special needs, is expanding its website to include JobTIPS. JobTIPS offers free "how to" interactive materials for individuals with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other special needs to help them evaluate, identify, and maintain employment.
"Finding and holding onto a job is difficult for everyone these days, but people with ASD may be at particular disadvantages," noted Thomas R. Insel, M.D., director of the National Institute of Mental Health, part of National Institutes of Health. Symptoms of ASD like social impairment, communication difficulties, and repetitive and stereotyped behaviors often pose major barriers for sustaining employment.
JobTIPS also targets educators, job coaches, clinicians, and special education staff who support individuals with ASD, as they transition out of high school and into vocational, education or other post-secondary activities.
JobTIPS creator Dorothy Strickland, Ph.D., President of Virtual Reality Aids Inc. and do2Learn.com, said, "Successful employment is the key to greater independence for individuals with ASD. JobTIPS aims to equip these young adults with the right resources to help them optimize their potential and at a level where employers see and appreciate the unique skills and talents they have to offer."
Estimates indicate that the cost of caring for a person with autism is more than $3 million during his or her lifetime. "With 1 in 110 children being diagnosed with autism, there is a critical need as a society to do more to help young adults on the spectrum transition more effectively into the workplace," said Susan Wilczynski, Ph.D., BACB-D, and Executive Director of the National Autism Center.
"Many people with autism spectrum disorders are capable of joining the workforce and being tax-contributing members of our communities. Yet the number employed is relatively low due to lack of access to information and supports that would result in gainful employment. JobTIPS helps fill this critical need by using technology that is accessible to adults throughout the country."
JobTIPS offers hundreds of detailed modeling videos, print guides, real-world tips, checklists, and scheduling exercises to help students learn what it takes to land a job, and then to be successful on the job. Additionally, the website is conveniently accessible from smart phones, tablet computers, and other remote devices.
JobTIPS was created by a team of educators, clinicians, teachers and parents and made possible through the support of a National Institutes of Health Stimulus Grant, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). To learn more, visit www.do2Learn.com.
About Do2Learn -Do2Learn provides free web-based tools and solutions based on scientific research and clinical experience to help individuals with disabilities and the professionals and caregivers who serve them. This learning material was developed to target specific deficits of individuals with neurological disorders including ASD, fetal alcohol effects, intellectual disabilities, attention disorders, learning and communication disorders and others. Visit www.do2Learn.com today.
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