Resource 6: Self-Advocacy for Clients With Autism Spectrum Disorder: Implementation Support

This is a checklist of steps that supervisors can take to teach this practice to their vocational rehabilitation (VR) counselors. The steps follow adult learning principles and are designed to support counselors in learning about and implementing this new practice.

  1. First, determine the learning goals related to this practice: What do you want VR counselors to know or know how to do with regard to this practice?
  2. Adult learners need to (1) understand the content; (2) figure out how it’s relevant, useful, and feasible to apply; (3) identify the skills they will need to use; and (4) practice implementing it, ideally in their setting. Review the practice with them by discussing these questions:
    1. Knowledge: What is the best practice?

      Review Resource 5, “Case Example for Strategy 3: Self-Advocacy for Clients With Autism Spectrum Disorder” or the first overview Module “Autism and Employment.”

    2. Attitudes: How possible is it to implement in our program? How will it help our clients? Review these requirements and discuss how feasible it is to implement.

      Setting requirements
      Other clients
      Other resources
      Barriers to implementation
      Opportunities for implementation

    3. Skills: What will the counselor need to do? Can you coach the counselor in any skills they lack?

      Can counselors identify appropriate clients to refer to job coaching?
      Suggestion: Work together to develop screening questions or parameters to identify clients in need of a job coach.

    4. Practice: How would we do it here? Talk through steps to implementation together, from identifying clients to conducting practice interviews.

      Can you eliminate any of the barriers you identified earlier?
      How will you or the counselor identify clients to engage with this practice?
      What support does the counselor want in order to use this practice with his or her first client?
      What does the counselor need to do next?
      What do you need to do to provide support for your counselor?
      What is a realistic timeline for engaging the first client in this new practice?
      How/when will you and the counselor continue to problem-solve any implementation challenges?

    Note. Counselor also can mean vendor, as some sites may contract out for the services described.


Next: Continue to Resource 7.