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Visual Support for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
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Vera Bernard-Opitz, PhD, BCBA-D, has worked as Clinical Psychologist, Associate Professor, and Behavior Therapist in rehabilitation centers, schools, universities and autism centers. She has assessed and treated more than 1000 children with autism and related disorders in the US, Singapore and Germany. She combines her background in applied research with a passion to find individual treatment solutions based on best practice methods. For more than 15 years she has coordinated the STEP Program in Singapore, which formed the basis for the STEP curriculum (Structured and Experience-Based Program). This program matches the main intervention methods (ABA, Precision Teaching, Experience-Based Learning and Visual Support) to characteristics of children with ASD. The STEP curriculum has been published and is now available in three languages. She also has been the long-time Editor of the Autism News of Singapore and the Autism News of Orange County. She currently works as International Consultant and helps families, home-teams and autism centers through tele-consultation and workshops. In addition, she is Supervisor for ABA teams in Southern California, reviewer for the main autism journals and last, not least - mother of two dear teenagers. Anne Haussler, PhD, holds a graduate degree in special education from the German Philipps-Universitat Marburg. She received her master's and PhD in developmental psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, in collaboration with the TEACCH program. As a professional, she spent two years at a regional TEACCH Center in North Carolina receiving extensive training in the TEACCH approach. After returning to Germany, she worked as a therapist in an autism treatment center. Through lectures, workshops, and numerous publications, Anne has played a key role in disseminating knowledge about TEACCH in Germany. She has developed a social skills program based on the TEACCH approach and published a book on her social skills program as well as a fundamental book on the TEACCH approach in general. In addition to working nationally and internationally as a consultant, lecturer, and trainer, Anne is co-founder and acting director of a TEACCH-based autism treatment center in Mainz, Germany.

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