There is strong research evidence that early intensive intervention based on principles of applied behavioural analysis (ABA) improves the skills of preschoolers with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD). Despite this, it remains a challenge to implement such programs at the community level, especially in regions with relatively fewer resources. Each province has approached these challenges differently. In 2005, Nova Scotia initiated a program based on a specific ABA-based intervention, Pivotal Response Treatment, within a less intensive service delivery model (Bryson et al., 2007). Dr. Smith will describe the model and its rationale, and will present evidence of the program's short-term impact on outcomes for children with ASD and their families. Following one year of intervention in the Nova Scotia program, children's average gains are comparable to those reported for programs that are far more intensive (Smith et al., 2010). Given these encouraging findings, discussion will focus on outstanding questions, and on next steps for research and for services.

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