Becoming multimodal authors: Pre-service teachers' interventions to support young children with autism

Grace Oakley, Christine Howitt, R. Garwood, A.-R. Durack

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


THe Purpose Of This Article is to describe two case studies of classroom-based teaching interventions, conducted by final-year pre-service teachers, which were successful in assisting young children with autism engage in and learn literacy through the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). The 10-day interventions were carried out as part of a two-year Master of Teaching course at an Australian university, and were designed to identify specific learning needs in young children, and then implement targeted interventions. The two cases described here show how ICTs were successfully used to create multimodal texts to support the literacy learning and engagement of young children with autism. The first case involved an intervention that employed two iPad apps-which were not intended specifically for children with autism-to support the literacy learning and engagement of a five-year-old. The second case involved the use of Microsoft PowerPoint on a laptop to develop multimodal non-fiction texts to improve an eight-year-old's attitude to, and engagement with, reading. Each intervention was found to be effective in improving the participating child's literacy achievement and engagement. Each used multisensory and student-centred approaches that acknowledged the children's strengths and interests, with ICTs being used to transform teaching and learning tasks. This article illustrates the successful drawing together of pre-service teachers' technological, pedagogical and content knowledge (TPACK), as well as their knowledge of the children concerned, to devise evidence-based interventions using ICTs to assist young children with autism to engage in, and learn, literacy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-96
JournalAustralian Journal of Early Childhood
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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