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Visuals for Autism: Beyond the Basic Symbols

Anna Fredman, MS, CCC-SLP

CE Credit: 2 Hours

Target Audience: Psychology CE | Counseling CE | Speech-Language Pathology CEUs | Social Work CE | Occupational Therapy CEUs | Marriage & Family Therapy CE | School Psychology CE | Teaching CE

Learning Level: Introductory

Course Type: Video

Course Abstract

Visuals for Autism: Beyond the Basic Symbols is a 2-hour online video continuing education (CE) course that demonstrates when, how, and why to use visuals with students with autism.

It is well-established by research that many learners on the autism spectrum benefit from the use of visuals. How can we go beyond a basic use of symbols to create and implement individualized visuals that will help our students learn and communicate more comprehensively? Participants will learn about considerations and strategies to take into account in order to put more effective visuals in place for their students on the autism spectrum. Topics covered include: broadening symbol selection, adding layers and additional components to visuals in order to make them more motivating and meaningful, providing visuals for a wide variety of expressive communicative functions, and using visuals for comprehension and organization as well as expression.

The course video is split into 2 parts for your convenience: part 1 is 56 minutes and part 2 is 57 minutes.

Course #20-94 | 2015 | 14 posttest questions

Learning Objectives

1.Summarize current research supporting the use of visuals for individuals on the autism spectrum
2.Explain the importance of using visuals for comprehension (and not only expression)
3.List the seven functions of communication that can be supported with visuals
4.Identify benefits and possible limitations of current practices such as PECS
5.Distinguish among visual topic boards, visual schedules, visual rules, and visual token boards, and their uses
6.Name several strategies for facilitating generalization of visual supports throughout a child's environment

Professional Development Resources, #1046, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 6/12/2019 - 6/12/2022. Social workers completing this course receive 2 clinical continuing education credits. 

Professional Development Resources is also approved by the Florida Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage & Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling (Provider #BAP346); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage & Family Therapist Board (Provider #RCST100501); and the Texas State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678).


This video course provides instant access to the course video, course handout, and the CE test. The CE test is open-book (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while watching the course video).

Successful completion of this course involves passing an online test (80% required, 3 chances to take) and we ask that you also complete a brief course evaluation. Click here to learn more.

Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

About the Author(s)

Anna Fredman, MS, CCC-SLP, is a speech-language pathologist at A+ Solutions in Beachwood, Ohio. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Brandeis University (Waltham, MA) and her master’s degree in speech-language pathology from the MGH Institute of Health Professions (Boston, MA), where she graduated with high honors. She previously worked at Monarch Center for Autism. She enjoys working with a wide range of school-aged students and has specialized in therapy for those on the autism spectrum, including high-functioning teenage students with a focus on social pragmatics and self-advocacy, and preschool-aged children learning basic communication and social skills.


: Ms. Fredman receives speaker fees for her presentations
No relevant nonfinancial relationship exists.

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