WWC review of this study

Efficacy of the ASAP Intervention for Preschoolers with ASD: A Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial

Boyd, B. A., Watson, L. R., Reszka, S. S., Sideris, J., Alessandri, M., Baranek, G. T., Crais, E. R., Donaldson, A., Gutierrez, A., Johnson, L., & Belardi, K. (2018). Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 48(9), 3144-3162. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1187321

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    144
     Students
    , grade
    PK

Reviewed: December 2019

At least one finding shows promising evidence of effectiveness
At least one statistically significant positive finding
Meets WWC standards without reservations
Problem behavior outcomes—Indeterminate effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Caregiver-teacher report form (CTRF) total score

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
121 students

62.71

63.99

No

--
More Outcomes
Show Supplemental Findings

Caregiver-teacher report form (CTRF), Internalizing scale

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
121 students

61.14

63.48

No

--

Caregiver-teacher report form (CTRF), Externalizing scale

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
121 students

60.99

61.85

No

--
School engagement outcomes—Statistically significant positive effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Engagement (author created measure) - Overall engagement

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
144 students

2.66

2.54

Yes

 
 
8
 
More Outcomes
Show Supplemental Findings

Engagement (author created measure) - Some engagement

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
144 students

0.59

0.53

Yes

 
 
11

Engagement (author created measure) - Unengaged

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
144 students

0.32

0.36

Yes

 
 
9

Engagement (author created measure) - Coordinated

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
144 students

0.11

0.08

No

--

Engagement (author created measure) - Person

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
144 students

0.05

0.04

No

--

Engagement (author created measure) - Object

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
156 students

0.38

0.35

No

--

Engagement (author created measure) - Onlooking

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
144 students

0.09

0.10

No

--

Engagement (author created measure) - Supported

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
144 students

0.05

0.06

No

--
Social-emotional competence outcomes—Indeterminate effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Structured Play Assessment (author modified) - Total

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
143 students

46.11

44.87

No

--
More Outcomes

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Total score

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
143 students

58.46

60.96

No

--
Show Supplemental Findings

Structured Play Assessment (author modified) - Symbolic

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
143 students

16.95

15.88

No

--

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Social interaction

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
143 students

9.14

8.81

No

--

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Requesting

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
143 students

25.49

24.88

No

--

Structured Play Assessment (author modified) - Functional

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample: mid-year interim outcome;
142 students

20.88

20.68

No

--

Structured Play Assessment (author modified) - Functional

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
143 students

20.21

20.01

No

--

Structured Play Assessment (author modified) - Total

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample: mid-year interim outcome;
142 students

45.78

46.05

No

--

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Social interaction

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample: mid-year interim outcome;
143 students

6.58

6.93

No

--

Structured Play Assessment (author modified) - Symbolic

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
142 students

15.89

16.36

No

--

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Requesting

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample: mid-year interim outcome;
143 students

21.01

22.59

No

--

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Joint attention

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
143 students

23.83

27.27

No

--

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Total score

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample: mid-year interim outcome;
143 students

46.07

57.26

No

--

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (study modified) - Joint attention

Advancing Social-Communication and Play (ASAP) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample: mid-year interim outcome;
143 students

18.47

27.77

No

--


Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • Female: 15%
    Male: 85%
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    Florida, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oregon, Washington
  • Race
    Black
    26%
    Other or unknown
    19%
    White
    56%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic    
    24%
    Not Hispanic or Latino    
    76%

Setting

The study was conducted in public schools in Florida, North Carolina, Minnesota, Oregon, and Washington. (pdf p.4)

Study sample

In the study sample, 24% of children were Hispanic, 26% were Black, and 56% were White. Females made up 15% of the overall sample. (Table 2)

Intervention Group

Advancing social-communication and play (ASAP) is a classroom-based intervention that aims to improve social-communication and play skills of children with autism spectrum disorder. The recommended dosage is 40 minutes of one-to-one interaction with each child per week and at least three group activities per school day. Preschool teams that included the classroom's lead teacher, at least one paraprofessional, and at least one speech-language pathologist (or occupational therapist) implemented the intervention. (p. 4)

Comparison Group

Preschool staff in comparison classrooms continued with their standard practice. They were offered the program materials and training at the end of the school year. (p. 8)

Support for implementation

Intervention staff received two trainings over the course of the school year, totaling in approximately 6 to 9 hours. Trained ASAP coaches conducted both trainings. (pp. 5-6)

 

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