EAB 3764 Applied Behavior Analysis

EAB 3764 Applied Behavior Analysis

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EAB 3764 Applied Behavior Analysis

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EAB 3764 Applied Behavior Analysis

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Course Code: EAB3764
University: University Of Florida

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Country: United States


Topic- Diagnosis of autism and diversity
Write about individual and cultural diversity issues when treating individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Students are to research areas of diversity and family factors and how interventions are influenced by issues such as religion, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, gender, physical disabilities, etc. For example, students should look for articles that have researched an intervention and included issues about how diversity may have influenced their study. A student’s paper may focus on a specific issue of diversity (i.e., issues related to implementing interventions with children in a Jewish community center; impact of poverty on ABA in rural schools) or can focus on general diversity issues related to a specific intervention (i.e., impact of ethnicity, socioeconomic status, etc. on floor time interventions). If you have difficulty finding articles about interventions and diversity, you may select a topic that is more general within the field of autism (i.e., diagnosis of autism and diversity), but you may not just write your paper without a specific diversity or family factor topic. Students may also choose to write their papers on how different family factors influence interventions. These family factors include (but are not limited to) how having a sibling with autism affects typically developing siblings, blended families/single parents, extended family factors, bilingualism, etc. Students are required to include information from at least 3 peer reviewed, data-based journal articles, but you are not limited to these articles as the best papers incorporate information from more sources than just the 3 required. Based upon your review of the research and your chosen topic you will need to discuss how issues related to individual and cultural diversity and/or family factors should be considered when developing and implementing treatments.


Autism is the neurological disorder that hampers the effective verbal communication. It is the complex disease, which prevents an appropriate behaviour and social interactions (Constantino & Charman, 2016). The decision-making in the diagnosis and treatment of autism are directly influenced by the cultural diversity. Autism contains five labels including Rett’s Syndrome, Pervasive Developmental Delay, Asperger’s Syndrome, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder, and classic Autism. Therefore, Autism is the spectrum of disorder (Burkett et al., 2015).  According to Ratto et al. (2016), cultural variables influence how well the family accepts the diagnosis and treatment. Autism is the devastating disease and includes long-term effects on individual and families. Clinicians, therefore, need to be aware of cultural values of families that affect the perception of autism. Understanding the role of culture is imperative for clinicians as with the rate of autism the cultural diversity is also increasing in the United States simultaneously (Colbert et al., 2017). The report discusses diagnosis of autism and cultural diversity.
Influence of culture on diagnosis 
According to article “The influence of culture” by Burkett et al. (2015), it is challenging to diagnose autism in families of minority cultures. When compared to Anglo patients, treating African and American patients is different for clinicians. The study highlighted a case of Anglo patients, where the physicians screened autism at an early age but not in case of African and American patients. It is because that the later visits less regularly to primary care physicians. Hence, the children of this community are diagnosed one and half years later with autism.  The study by Ennis-Cole et al. (2013) highlighted that culture affects the way parents perceive the signs and symptoms of autism. Eastern Indian parents recognise social issues in their children. They pay less heed to the speech issues as they highly value the social conformity. On the other hand, the Anglo parents focus more on the general developmental delays in the child. They recognise the regression of language and emphasise less on the social behaviour.
According to the article “Spirituality in Latino families of children with autism spectrum disorder” conducted by Salkas et al. (2016), Latin mothers are highly likely to report the early concerns about their child’s behavioural issues and temperament. However, they were found to demonstrate less knowledge about the developmental milestones in children. They also demonstrated less knowledge about the autism spectrum disorder. It was found from the survey that the children of Latin mother were diagnosed mostly with autism than with another autism spectrum disorder when compared to the white mothers. It significantly increased the time of the first concern of child’s behaviour and time of diagnosis. This incident was highly prevalent among the SES. It considerably delayed the diagnosis. The study also highlighted that the Latino children were found with severe impairment than their white peers due to delayed diagnosis and intervention.
Influence of religion on autism 
According to the article “Caregiving experiences of Latino families with children with autism spectrum disorder” Blanche et al. (2015), religion plays a vital role in autistic families, which includes emotional strength for daily tasks, perceive the importance of diagnosis and treatment. The study published in American Journal of Occupational Therapy mentioned that in Latino culture Catholicism is the dominant religion. The Latino mothers compare their condition with the virgin mother. Their faith gives them the strength and dedication to deal with their autistic child, and they hope best for the future. People in this culture consider that their child’s autism is the sign of God or test of worthiness. Similar faith and positive attitude were found in other minority cultures such as Ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, the Native Hawaiian culture and the Native Americans believe in the abilities of the children. They value their children as an important part of the community irrespective of their disability, thus take active part in diagnosis and treatment.
In the study, “Cultural aspects within caregiver interactions of ultra?Orthodox Jewish women and their family members with mental illness” executed by Weiss et al. (2013), the effects of the treatment due to religious beliefs were highlighted. For instance, the Ultra Orthodox Jewish people seek medical advice, and in case it contradicts with the advice given by the rabbi, the religious recommendation is preferred. Similarly, the Latino children are more likely to use non-traditional treatment approaches in comparison to the Anglo children. In some South Asian families, if the autistic child is the girl, professional help is delayed as the parents fear it will affect her arranged marriage in future.  Moreover, the Anglo families believe in individualism, which is also the common goal for autism. Autistic children are taught independence through reducing behavioural issues, academic learning, communication, language. However, this treatment method is not accepted by the minority cultures who believe in collectivism. The collective theory emphasises on cooperation, interdependence and compliance.   These perspectives thus affect the advocacy competencies of the counsellors and the professionals. Clinicians thus need appropriate skills and cultural awareness to meet the different needs of families with autism for effective treatment of the client.  
Family cohesion an important cultural value
According to article “Autism spectrum disorders: The worldwide charm and challenge of autism spectrum disorders” by  Boshkoff Johnson, (2014), .Family cohesion and support greatly influenced the treatment of the autistic children. In Latino culture, “Marianismo” ideology is found, and it means that people believe in raising family regarding giving and not receiving. Such positive perception leads to increased attention to childcare. With all the members participating with the feeling of solidarity and loyalty, the depression among the mothers of the autistic child is decreased. However, the drawback of this approach includes lack of perceived importance of seeking professional help, which is detrimental to successful treatment of autism.
As per Okumoto (2016) other minority cultures with Marianismo ideology also allows the mothers to emulate Virgin Mary and due to this philosophy they are less fatigued and enjoy good overall psychological wellbeing. Thus, diagnosis and treatment of autistic children are less challenging. In Greek cultures, parents show the negative attitude towards the intellectually disabled child. People with autistic children are not accepted in the society. Therefore, Greek mothers are socially isolated and have low self-esteem. Therefore, they have low ability to seek appropriate child-care service. They may accept few treatment goals and reject others. However, in any culture mothers with high educational attainment have the more realistic attitude towards the autistic child and his or her development. Clinicians must consider these factors to develop the successful treatment plan for autism spectrum disorder.   
Implications for counsellors and professionals
According to the article “The impact of culture on autism diagnosis and treatment: considerations for counselors and other professionals”, by Ennis-Cole et al. (2013) Counsellors need personal awareness about the client’s needs, thoughts, feelings, and beliefs and values bout child’s autism. For instance, video modelling, augmentative and alternative communication devices are used in language development both in children and adult with Autism spectrum disorder. For some families, it may be the cost prohibitive technology applications. During the use of particular colour, symbols and signs as their meanings may vary across cultures (Constantino & Charman, (2016).  Some colours and symbols may be fine in some culture and may be offensive in other cultures.  Therefore, it is challenging to the professionals, to use these devices and video modeling for treating autism spectrum disorder. Thus, they require integrating family values and ideologies related to aetiology of autism spectrum disorder, diagnosis and treatment planning and the technologies used for intervention. For families with autism spectrum disorder, the counsellors need to integrate multicultural counselling skills. It includes personal awareness of the client, skills to implement relevant theories, develop questionnaires, creating awareness (Ratto et al., 2016).   
It can be concluded from the above discussion that cultural values shape how one deals with autism. Diagnosis and treatment plan is affected by the manner minority cultures accept the intellectually disabled child. Lack of knowledge and awareness also leads to delay in diagnosis and intervention. Counsellors and the professionals are the invaluable resources to the families with autism spectrum disorder. Therefore, they must acknowledge the cultural perspectives related to autism spectrum disorder. They must work to improve the child’s condition while preserving the client’s dignity. They need to set reasonable goals, make appropriate recommendations, and avoid harmful labels. Such therapeutic adjustment will ensure the well-being of the client.
Blanche, E. I., Diaz, J., Barretto, T., & Cermak, S. A. (2015). Caregiving experiences of Latino families with children with autism spectrum disorder. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 69(5), 6905185010p1-6905185010p11.
Boshkoff Johnson, E. (2014). Autism spectrum disorders: The worldwide charm and challenge of autism spectrum disorders. In Special Education International Perspectives: Biopsychosocial, Cultural, and Disability Aspects (pp. 117-151). Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
Burkett, K., Morris, E., Manning-Courtney, P., Anthony, J., & Shambley-Ebron, D. (2015). African American families on autism diagnosis and treatment: The influence of culture. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 45(10), 3244-3254.
Colbert, A. M., Webber, J., & Graham, R. (2017). Factors that Influence Autism Knowledge in Hispanic Cultures: a Pilot Study. Journal of racial and ethnic health disparities, 4(2), 156-164.
Constantino, J. N., & Charman, T. (2016). Diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder: reconciling the syndrome, its diverse origins, and variation in expression. The Lancet Neurology, 15(3), 279-291.
Ennis-Cole, D., Durodoye, B. A., & Harris, H. L. (2013). The impact of culture on autism diagnosis and treatment: considerations for counselors and other professionals. The Family Journal, 21(3), 279-287.
Okumoto, E. K. (2016). A multicultural examination of the relationship between coping and well-being in parents of children with disabilities (Doctoral dissertation, Washington State University).
Ratto, A. B., Reznick, J. S., & Turner-Brown, L. (2016). Cultural effects on the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder among Latinos. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 31(4), 275-283.
Salkas, K., Magaña, S., Marques, I., & Mirza, M. (2016). Spirituality in Latino families of children with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Family Social Work, 19(1), 38-55.
Weiss, P., Shor, R., & Hadas?Lidor, N. (2013). Cultural aspects within caregiver interactions of ultra?Orthodox Jewish women and their family members with mental illness. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 83(4), 520.

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