This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

The Effects of Direct Instruction on Reading Comprehension for Individuals with Autism or Intellectual Disability




Head, Cynthia

Type of Degree

PhD Dissertation


Special Education, Rehabilitation, Counseling


This study investigated the effects of a Direct Instruction (DI) reading comprehension program on the reading comprehension skills of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder or intellectual disability. Although the effectiveness of DI programs has been well documented in disability and instructional literature, effectiveness of DI for individuals with autism and intellectual disability is sparse. This study examined the effects of Corrective Reading Comprehension: B1, a reading comprehension program, on students’ acquisition of specific reading comprehension skills (parts of speech, combining sentences with and, identifying contradictions, and identifying relevant/irrelevant information). A single subject multiple-probe across behaviors design was employed to investigate whether a functional relation existed between DI and reading comprehension for this sample. A functional relation between the DI and reading comprehension was demonstrated for each participant across all behavioral conditions. Additional data were collected in the area of reading comprehension using standardized and curriculum-based measures. Implications for practice and future research are discussed.