Autism Spectrum Disorders are insidious developmental disorders including autism, Asperger’s disorder, and pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified, affecting an average of 1 in 68 children throughout the country. Although no known prevention or cure for autism exists, various forms of music effectively support individuals with autism in engaging in social activities. Extensive literature on the neurological impairments present in autism coupled with the multitude of evidence indicated the effects of music on the same neurological functions. The need for continued research into the effects of inclusive musical ensemble participation on the social behaviors of children with autism was demonstrated. The significance of the study was to illuminate the potential benefits of participation in inclusive musical ensembles to improve social engagement and build peer relationships for children with autism. Developing musical ensemble skills at an early age may support continued participation and the inherent socialization later in life. The purpose of the descriptive collective case study was to explore the relationship between inclusive musical ensemble participation on the social and nonsocial behaviors of children with autism from the perspective of the children’s parents and teachers. The demographics of nine cases involved three different school systems, three types of inclusive ensembles (chorus, band, and orchestra), 10 parents, five music teachers, and seven regular or special education teachers. The improved social behaviors and increased friendships observed by the study’s participants on behalf of a majority of the children were consistent with neurological and behavioral literature.
|Advisor:||Mandel, Susan E.|
|School:||University of Phoenix|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 76/06(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Mental health, Music, Music education, Special education, Curriculum development|
|Keywords:||Inclusive music education, Music and autism, Music and special education, Musical ensembles|
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