Thursday, February 3, 2011

You can actually measure this thing!

One way to measure progress with any approach for autism is to use the Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (ATEC) to evaluate your child before (referred to as "baseline") and then after (or throughout) the treatment.  Even though I have a detailed list of Dante's characteristics on the "Starting Point" page, I really like the idea of an actual metric.  Well, 'like it' is not the best way to put it.  I mean, Dante scores closer to the severe than to mild autism, but that is where we are now.  This is one test were a lower score is a better score.  

I present below the four areas measured by the ATEC score:  Speech, Sociability, Sensory/Cognitive Awareness, and Health/Physical/Behavior.  Each scale has a different range, and is distributed according to the results of the baseline scores for the first 1358 children assessed with it.  I highlighted where Dante's current scores fall in bright yellow.  The first column below shows the percentile each row falls within. Which means, for example, that if severe autism is 100%, Dante's speech falls within 60-69% of that.  Actually his total score (which was 86), also falls within 60-69% of the spectrum.  The goal is to get that number as low as possible; I would like him to totally fail this Autism test!

If you complete the ATEC Checklist for your child (which doesn't even take 20 minutes), you get the results and each of the questions with your answers emailed to you immediately.  I want to thank the mom blogger for The Boy Who Walked Backwards for reminding me of this test.  I had attempted to fill it out years ago from a different site and it never worked for me.  This time I printed out the results and made some notes on why I answered some of the questions the way I did, just to be clear on what my initial assumptions were for the next time I assess Dante.

So an 86 total score it is.  Sounds like a "B", but it's really not.  We're aiming for a full blown "F-" on this one!  Tomorrow we begin the first vaccine clearing, DTaP.  The great week I posted about has continued, so we begin the clearings on a very high note.  I hope Dante's body is perfectly positioned to work through this next phase very successfully!


Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist ATEC Report


JAS said...

Hope his ATEC score will get reduce and reduce and there is hardly any score to record. My prayers for him.

Mom Connected said...

Thank you so much, JAS! It was through your blog that I re-discovered this useful metric. It is so simple and to the point. I am totally with you that we want our children to completely fail this test. That is the goal!

Best of luck with your potential move!

Lucia alonso said...

Well Jas is so helpful, she has helped me a ton!!! I have been meaning to write to u Jas and have been so forgetful as always. She too helped figure out that Alexs sleep issue was due to our previous house, god bless you Jas!!

Dantes mom: by reading your blog I remembered about the ATEC test and took one to re-evaluate Alexs progress! Did u see my post about it? Almost two years later and he almost failed the test! I'm sure by this time next year he will fail this test terribly :)

Thank you both for posting about ATEC it sure made my week to see how much Alex had improved, I am sure your precious children will lower their scores too until they fail for good!!!

Jas: inshallah Dantes mom: amen!!!