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Baylor researchers look to find 'Sibling Success' in new autism spectrum program

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Posted at 5:46 PM, Apr 05, 2023
and last updated 2023-04-11 10:19:02-04

WACO, Texas — Baylor researchers are launching a new program that gets siblings involved in autism spectrum intervention.

The 'Sibling SUCCESS (Supporting Unique Collaborative Care to Encourage Shared Success)' program brings together children with autism and their siblings without autism in treatment programs.

The program, led by assistant professor of educational psychology, Jessica Akers, seeks to include siblings in conversations about treatment methods.

"Sometimes siblings have information that parents don't," Akers said.

They hope to work with 125 families at varying levels —those levels range from one-day workshops to extended, more long-term programs.

Akers explained that sometimes sibling relationships are overlooked in behavioral interventions. Akers herself grew up with siblings with autism.

"I have two siblings with autism. So, it's really important to me. And has been a goal of mine ever since I was younger," Akers said.

Akers' research assistant, Janelle Carlson, said the personal perspective will strengthen the program.

"Hearing how she can you know put her personal life and really take this to another level with research is really great," Carlson said.

Families can get involved by emailing or calling 254-710-4444.