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      The Engagement for Learning Framework: connecting with learning and evidencing progress for children with autism spectrum conditions

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          Abstract

          Purpose

          – The purpose of this paper is to describe and illustrate the use of the Engagement for Learning Framework developed through the Complex Learning Difficulties and Disabilities (CLDD) Research Project (2009-2011). The resources support mainstream and special educators to extend the engagement of learners with CLDD.

          Design/methodology/approach

          – In total, 95 educational settings and 224 students took part across three phases of research (November 2009-March 2011) comprising a resource development phase and two trial phases in mainstream and special schools. The researchers used an exploratory, multiple case study approach and action research methodologies. A recent case study from Hamilton School, Birmingham, illustrates the Engagement for Learning Framework.

          Findings

          – The resulting Engagement Profile and Scale data showed increases in engagement for similar proportions of the student cohort. Across the three phases, 81-85 per cent (mean: 83 per cent) increased their levels of engagement for learning, 2-9 per cent (mean: 5.3 per cent) showed no change, while 5.5-16 per cent (mean: 11.6 per cent) showed decreased levels of engagement. Descriptive data corroborated these scores.

          Originality/value

          – This original research added value to existing work by developing resources for educators that enabled them to adapt activities to encourage students’ engagement in seven engagement areas (awareness, curiosity, investigation, discovery, anticipation, persistence and initiation). The resources enabled educators to score learner engagement over time to show progress and collected associated descriptive data.

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          Most cited references 10

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          Motivation in the classroom: Reciprocal effects of teacher behavior and student engagement across the school year.

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            Unmasking the Effects of Student Engagement on First-Year College Grades and Persistence

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              Individual and environmental determinants of engagement in autism.

              Engagement is a core component of effective educational programs for children with autism. Analysis of 711 naturalistic goal-directed classroom behaviors of four school-age children with autism and four comparable children with Down syndrome (DS) was conducted. The definition of engagement was expanded to include child compliance and congruence. A main finding was both child and environmental factors influenced type of engagement. Children with DS produced 20% more goal-directed behaviors that were both congruent and compliant compared to children with autism. Large group instruction was associated with less congruent engagement but more compliant engagement for children with autism. These findings suggest specific types of engagement which may lead to advances in developing evidence-based practices for specific developmental disorders.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                AIA
                10.1108/AIA
                Advances in Autism
                Emerald Publishing
                2056-3868
                4 January 2016
                4 January 2016
                : 2
                : 1
                : 12-23
                Affiliations
                Educational Consultant, Worcester, UK
                Hamilton Primary School, Birmingham, UK
                Schools Research Consultant, Derby, UK AND Leeds Beckett University, Leeds, UK
                Chadsgrove School, Bromsgrove,UK
                Article
                AIA-10-2015-0021.pdf
                10.1108/AIA-10-2015-0021
                © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
                Product
                Categories
                Articles
                Case study
                Health & social care
                Learning & intellectual disabilities
                Custom metadata
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