Visual Supports Fact Sheet
Visual supports (VS) are concrete cues that provide information about an activity, routine, or expectation and/or support skill demonstration.Visual supports can provide assistance across activity and setting, and can take on a number of forms and functions. These include but are not limited to: photographs, icons, drawings, written words, objects, environmental arrangement, schedules, graphic organizers, organizational systems, and scripts. Visual supports are commonly used to: 1) organize learning environments, 2) establish expectations around activities, routines, or behaviors (e.g., visual schedules, visual instructions, structured work systems, scripts, power cards), 3) provide cues or reminders (e.g., conversation and initiation cues, choice making sup- ports, visual timers, finished box), and 4) provide preparation or instruction (e.g., video priming, video feedback).
Visual supports meet evidence-based criteria with 18 single case design studies.
According to the evidence-based studies, this intervention has been effective for toddlers (0-2 years) to young adults (19-22 years) with ASD.
Visual supports can be used effectively to address social, communication, behavior, play, cognitive, school-readiness, academic, motor, and adaptive skills.
Hume, K. (2013). Visual supports (VS) fact sheet. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Adapted from: Hume, K. (2008). Overview of visual supports. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Kyle Bringhurst, MSW
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