Special Education PhD Student Collaborates with Department Chair, Others, on Researching the Immigrant Experience as it Relates to ASD

Department of Special Education doctoral student Nataly Lim has co-authored two articles about the struggles of immigrant families with children on the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) with Mark O’Reilly, professor and chair of the department, and several colleagues.

The first article, “A Review of Barriers Experienced by Immigrant Parents of Children with Autism when Accessing Services,” examined eight studies published during the last decade that illuminated the poor health outcomes immigrants experience due to limited access to health care. Immigrant children with ASD are typically diagnosed at a later age and receive fewer hours of service due to limited English proficiency. Key barriers included long wait times, language barriers, and limited health literacy.

The second article, “Overcoming Language Barriers between Interventionists and Immigrant Parents of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder,” covered a study that used a video-prompting intervention to overcome language barriers between English-speaking trainers and Spanish-speaking immigrant parents of children with autism. The findings suggest that video prompting can be used to teach immigrant parents of children with autism who have limited English proficiency when there is a language mismatch between parents and trainers

Both articles appeared in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.