SPECTRUM: Lifespan Autism Resources & Training is an exciting, innovative online course offering perspectives about ASD across the lifespan to increase awareness and understanding.
The first pilot offering of SPECTRUM was a success and Selkirk College has now launched further online Lifespan Autism Resources & Training sessions.
Using a story-based multimedia approach including videos, lightboard technology and strong graphic elements, lessons are presented through shared interviews and real-life case example stories that elaborate on the content while bringing information and insights into context.
“We’ve been thrilled at the response to the stories, and most especially, to the videos of the local people who were gracious enough to speak candidly to us and to share their lives and their experiences,” says Thiessen. “Students have responded with resounding chorus that this was a powerful way to embed their learning in the real world, to understand and see real-life implications of the curricular work.”
Students can learn from home as it fits into their schedule. SPECTRUM will begin on the third Monday of every month and can accommodate up to 20 students per session. It consists of 12 lessons to be completed at an individual’s own pace with support from Selkirk College. The cost is $275.
SPECTRUM will appeal to education assistants, teachers, early childhood educators and community support workers who want to increase their qualifications and broaden their resume. In School Districts 51, 10, 8, 5 and 20, this course meets the Autism Training Requirements.
The training and resources are also valuable for parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, caregivers, coaches, store clerks, bus drivers, individuals with ASD and anyone living in community, says Selkirk College Education Assistant & Community Support Worker Program instructor Jane Green.
“There is a strong community need for basic information about autism and the impacts it has at all ages,” she says. “Neurodivergent thinking just needs to be understood. Information creates insight, acceptance and inclusion.”