The IEP is an important tool for educating children with
autism. IEP stands for
Individualized Education Plan, and the â€śindividualizedâ€ť is a key term. One goal that is ideal for one child is
not the best for another child.
However, you can follow some of these examples and modify them based on
your childâ€™s or studentâ€™s needs.
These IEP goals and objectives are ideal for children with autism, but
they can be modified for other diagnoses as well.
The basic format for IEP goals is: ____ will perform a
specific skill, a certain number of times, under specified conditions, at a
specified level of achievement, and for a specific length of time.
Social skills refer to how children with autism interact
with their peers, how they engage in play or turn-taking skills, how they talk
with others, and how they understand and display emotions. Example goals include:
- ____ will work collaboratively in small group
settings (share materials, listen to and comment on peer suggestions) 4 out of
- ____ will take turns 4 out of 5 opportunities to
do so by paying attention to a peerâ€™s turn and waiting for his own turn.
- ____ will raise his hand and wait to be called
on before speaking aloud in group settings 4 out of 5 times.
- ____ will not interrupt others and show
appropriate social manners 4 out of 5 times.
- ____ will identify emotional states 4 out of 5
times and will state why a person might feel a particular emotions 4 out of 5
opportunities to do so.
- ____ will identify appropriate reactions to
emotions 4 out of 5 opportunities.
- ____ will demonstrate appropriate voice tone and
volume 90 percent of opportunities to do so.
Communication is often an area in which children with autism
will struggle, and initiating a conversation as well as maintaining one for an
extended period might be areas in which to improve.
- ____ will initiate conversation with peers 4 out
of 5 opportunities to do so.
- ____ will take turns in conversation with peers,
for conversations initiated by student or by peers, 4 out of 5 opportunities.
- ____ will maintain conversations by staying on
topic or making appropriate transitions for up to 5 exchanges 4 out of 5
opportunities to do so.
- ____ will identify non-verbal forms of
communication (voice tone, personal space, body orientation, or facial
expressions) and explain their implied meanings 4 out of 5 times.
Children with autism often will have difficulty operating
within the structure of a school environment, or they might become frustrated
or agitated when structures and routines are changed.
- ____ will participate in tasks to completion
with or without verbal prompts 80% of the time.
- ____ will accept changes to the routine by
exhibiting appropriate behaviors with given visual or verbal cues 80% of the
- ____ will independently ask to take a break 70%
of the time.
These are just a few examples, and the IEP might include
sections for academic skills, language skills, life skills, or other necessary
goals. The goals will need to be
tailored to the studentâ€™s needs, and each goal needs to be measurable. Once children with autism meet goals,
the difficulty of the goal should increase. The IEP goals should be challenging but reachable, and parents
and educators need to collaborate and identify what is best for the student and
what goals can reasonably be met.