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Video Self Modeling (VSM) is an intervention being introduced with our students in the Social Skills program. Research has proven VSM to be an effective intervention for children with autism. The goal of VSM is to capture a child displaying a skill correctly and receiving praise. The child then views the videos in preparation for completing the tasks or skills independently. These videos can be created and used in many different ways. Collaboration with the family to determine the child’s needs is essential when planning to create a video.

Video Self Modeling is based on the knowledge that children learn best from models most like themselves. Watching another child of the same age and gender modeling a skill is an effective intervention. A child watching themselves engage in a targeted behavior can be more effective. Video Self Modeling is also built upon a child’s need to be successful. A child watching him- or herself complete a task successfully and receive praise can build self-confidence and increase the desire to try new things!

To create the video, raw footage is collected, and often edited, to display the targeted skills or tasks. There are two ways to do this. The first method is intended to capture a skill that the child can typically demonstrate independently, but might not do so consistently or fluently. The child is recorded completing the task or skill on his or her own. The videos are then used to build self-assurance in the skill and increase fluency or consistency. This method is called Positive Self Review. The child is reviewing something positive that they can do.

The second method of creating a video is intended to display a skill that the child cannot yet demonstrate independently. The child is recorded completing the task or skill with prompting. Typically, a familiar adult (parent or therapist) provides verbal prompting, or step-by-step instructions, on how to complete the task or skill. Then, the verbal prompts are edited out and the final product is a video of the child completing the task independently. This is called Video Feed Forward.

Social Skills staff are excited to be using this research-based intervention with our clients and families!

For more information on Video Self Modeling, please see the following resources:

A power point on VSM by the Siskin Children’s Institute: http://www.siskin.org/downloads/vsm_scipresentation.pdf

An article by Dr. Tom Buggey and others on VSM and autism: http://foa.sagepub.com/content/26/1/25

~ Josey Jones, MSW

 

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