Answering Wh-Questions with the Support of Graphic Organizers: Effects on 8th Graders with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Karin R. Kliemann
Arlington Independent School District

Miriam C. Boesch
University of North Texas

Endia J. Lindo
Texas Christian University


Students with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are being educated in general education content classrooms that use lessons directed to whole groups of students which limit use of visually presented material. For some students with ASD, having limited visual support hinders their abilities to process and comprehend material. Research shows promising results associated with the use of a graphic organizer to increase comprehension accuracy. The purpose of this study was to document the relationship between using a graphic organizer and increasing reading comprehension for students with ASD. The study used a single-subject, multiple-baseline design across participants to evaluate whether the use of a graphic organizer impacted the accuracy of answering wh-questions for grade-level social studies content. Participants included four eighth-grade students with ASD in an urban public school. Results supported current research by showing an increase in comprehension skills with the use of a graphic organizer.

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