SCERTS. It makes for a catchy acronym, and rolls of the tongue easily, but what does it stand for?

Speech and occupational therapists from all three CSLOT offices, along with over 100 fellow therapists, administrators, parents, and educators, spent October 25th and 26th in South San Francisco, discovering what SCERTS was all about and how to implement this model—a model developed for individuals who have autism spectrum or related disorders—into their practice.

We began by briefly reviewing that SCERTS refers to social communication (SC), emotional regulation (ER), and transactional support (TS), after which we jumped right into the main attraction—learning how to put SCERTS into action!

We all had our handouts and pens ready, and our eye and minds wide open as we listened to and learned from our wonderfully enlightened presenters, Emily Rubin and Barry Prizant. If you’ve never heard this duo speak, you must sign up for their next speaking engagement right now! I must say that they are certainly a force to be reckoned with when it comes to public speaking. No question about that!

Emily and Barry presented videos and shared detailed power-point notes, worksheets, and case-studies, while answering questions, and supplying us with useful tools like lists of “frequently used objectives and supports” to help all of us better understand how we can take this knowledge and these tools and implement them into our practice.

Our presenters repeatedly told us that they would change our way of thinking from “sure, I think I can do this” to “yes! I know I can do this,” and I believe most of us left this 2-day institute feeling empowered with new knowledge and new skills to work with individuals who have ASD and their families; we left feeling like we’ve been challenged; we left feeling like we know we can!

So, I’ll finish with another acronym. FYI: I felt incredibly lucky to get the chance to learn about the implementation of this comprehensive and multidisciplinary approach, and be in the presence of two incredible collaborators who were able to teach me so much in just a short time.

-Diana Pritsker, M.S., CF-SLP

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