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A 5-Year-Old North Dakota Girl Overcomes Autism with Use of Skills®, an Online Autism Curriculum

Grand Forks, N.D. (PRWEB) July 29, 2013

Five-year-old Maddy Robinson is the newest face of the Center for Autism and Related Disorders' (CARD) “Mission Possible: Portraits of Hope” online video series that highlights the personal journeys, challenges, and successes of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Maddy achieved recovery from autism after early intervention using applied behavior analysis (ABA) led by her parents using the Skills® curriculum. Maddy’s story can be viewed at

Skills® was created by researchers at CARD, the world’s largest provider of state-of-the-art, early intensive behavioral intervention for individuals with ASD, in an effort to address the global need for affordable access to an effective and comprehensive autism curriculum. The online program is based on the principles and procedures of ABA, an empirically-supported treatment, and is designed to be both comprehensive and easy to use, increasing treatment effectiveness to produce positive results for every child.

Maddy was diagnosed with autism at the age of two and began using Skills® at two-and-a-half years of age. Now, after receiving 30 hours per week of intensive ABA-based intervention through her customized treatment program designed by Skills®, Maddy has fully recovered from her diagnosis of autism. Maddy recently entered kindergarten and is considered a social butterfly; making friends wherever she goes.

“When Maddy was diagnosed with autism, there were no ABA providers in the state of North Dakota,” said Maddy’s mother, Janna Robinson. “Thankfully, we found Skills® and knew the intensive ABA method was working when, after just a month into treatment, Maddy reached out and asked to hold my hand.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1 in every 88 children in the U.S. is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), making it more prevalent than juvenile diabetes, pediatric cancer, and childhood AIDS combined.

“Nothing makes the work we do at CARD more gratifying than seeing the successes of individuals like Maddy,” said Adel Najdowski, Ph.D, BCBA-D, the Skills® senior content development contributor and director of dissemination and research. “Many families do not have access to the services they so desperately need, which is where Skills® comes into play. With this tool, parents can personally treat and track the progress of their child.”

Skills® is based on over 40 years of research on using ABA for autism intervention, as well as research on child development. CARD supervisors and therapists use the Skills® program to assess a child’s strengths and weaknesses, design a treatment plan, and track progress through integrated reports, graphs, and timelines.

Skills® offers the first and only ABA-based comprehensive social cognition and executive functions curricula available with the goal of achieving positive results for every child. While the system identifies and provides lessons for each child based on the results of his or her assessment, it also allows users the flexibility to tailor the program to the child’s unique needs. It is designed to give educators for children with ASD access to the most comprehensive assessment of a child’s development available. Each of nearly 4,000 lesson activities includes IEP goals, worksheets, visual aids, tracking forms and lesson videos.

Teachers, parents, and practitioners can also use Skills® as an effective management tool, as the online program evaluates treatment progress one child at a time. Skills® provides charts and graphs that track treatment gains and the impact of various events (including other treatments and life events) on the child’s progress. Plus, by allowing the user to look at progress across a number of children, the user can evaluate treatment integrity down to the individual teacher.

About Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD):
CARD treats individuals of all ages who are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) at its 25 treatment centers around the globe. CARD was founded in 1990 by leading autism expert and clinical psychologist Doreen Granpeesheh, PhD, BCBA-D. CARD treats individuals with ASD using the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA), which is empirically proven to be the most effective method for treating individuals with ASD and recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the US Surgeon General. CARD employees a dedicated team of over 1,000. For more information about the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, visit: or call (855) 345-2273.

Stacey Price / Mobile Phone: 310.740.5146 / Email: s(dot)price(at)centerforautism(dot)com

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