About the SCERTS Model

The SCERTS© Model

The SCERTS© Model (Social Communication, Emotional Regulation and Transactional Support) was developed out of 25 years of research and clinical/educational practice by Dr. Barry Prizant, Dr. Amy Wetherby, Ms. Emily Rubin, and Ms. Amy Laurent, a multidisciplinary team of professionals trained in Communication Disorders, Special Education, Occupational Therapy, and Developmental and Behavioral 

SCERTSlogoRPsychology. Each team member brought his or her area of expertise to create this educational approach for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families. SCERTS© is a comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach to enhancing communication and socioemotional abilities, and for supporting families.

The 2 Volume SCERTS© Model Manual (Brookes Publishing, Inc.) is now available. You can download a PDF by clicking here. The DVD/ 3 Video on the SCERTS© Model is also available for Download a PDF.

A framework and guide

Provides a framework to directly address social communication and emotional regulation, the core challenges of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). SCERTS focuses on building a child’s capacity to communicate with a conventional, symbolic system from preverbal to conversational levels of communication. It also focuses on the development of emotional regulatory (i.e., self and mutual regulatory capacities to regulate attention, arousal and emotional state). Transactional supports are designed and implemented across settings to foster more successful interpersonal interactions and relationships, and more productive learning experiences across school, home and community settings.

An Evidence-based practical approach based on years of clinical and educational experience

Incorporates educational/treatment strategies derived from empirical research and sound clinical/educational practice. The SCERTS© Model collaborators draw from almost 100 years of collective experience and training in a variety of treatment models with children with ASD. SCERTS was developed based on extensive research in child and human development, and has been proven to be effective in peer-reviewed published research in large sample studies with preschool and school-age children. Collectively, the SCERTS© team has published over 140 articles and chapters in scholarly journals and books, six books or quarterly journals, and two assessment instruments.

Recognizes individual differences in Assessment and Intervention

Provides an individualized education/treatment approach based on a child’s strengths and needs, guided by research on the development of children with and without disabilities. SCERTS includes a curriculum-based assessment that identifies current abilities and needs, that leads to the highest priority goals and objectives based on 1) functional needs; 2) family priorities; and 3) developmental appropriateness.

Integrated Team-based, Family-centered approach

SCERTS is designed to encourage professionals from different disciplines to collaborate with each other and with families when addressing core challenges and enhancing adaptive skills for children with ASD. It is comprehensive and integrated, representing a new generation of education/treatment approaches.works. SCERTS takes into account critical individual differences across families in reference to their priorities and lifestyle. Families are collaborative partners in assessment and education/treatment efforts.

Focus on functional skills and meaningful outcomes

Progress is measured in functional activities with a variety of partners. Therefore, the broader context of a child’s development is recognized, including family involvement, and the absolute necessity for supporting communication and socio-emotional development in everyday activities and routines.

Where is SCERTS being implemented?

Since the publication of the The SCERTS© Model manuals in 2006, SCERTS is now being implemented in agencies and school districts across the United States, US Virgin Islands, Canada, Europe, Australia, China and Japan, and has been adopted by the Ministry of Education in New Zealand for their 0-6 Early Intervention programming.

The SCERTS manuals were recently translated into Japanese (under the official auspices of the Japanese Developmental Clinical Psychology Association) and Korean, and will be translated into Spanish and Chinese by autism experts in Spain and Mainland China. Barry and his collaborators have conducted SCERTS Model workshops in Japan, Mainland China, Spain, New Zealand, Australia, Scandinavia and the UK to support these efforts.

SCERTS© Collaborators

For more information on The SCERTS Model and the collaborators go to www.SCERTS.com

SCERTS© Model Selected Publications and Resources

  • Prizant, B. M., Wetherby, A.. M., Rubin, E., Laurent, A, C., and Rydell, P. J. (2006). THE SCERTS© Model: Volume I Assessment; Volume II Program planning and intervention. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing.
  • Prizant, B. M.,Wetherby, A.M.,Rubin, E, & Laurent, A.C. (2010). SCERTS© Easy-Score. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing.
  • Prizant, B. M., Wetherby, A.. M., Rubin, E., Laurent, A, C., (2010). The SCERTS Model. In K. Siri and T. Lyons (ed)., Cutting-Edge therapies for autism: 2010-2011. New York, NY: Skyhorse Publishing.
  • Prizant, B.M. (2004) Autism Spectrum Disorders and the SCERTS© Model: A Comprehensive Educational Approach. 3 part videotape/DVD series. Port Chester, NY: National Professional Resources.
  • Prizant, B.M., (in press). The SCERTS Model: An interview. In K. Quill, Social interventions in autism. Autism Asperger’s Publishing Company.
  • Rubin, E., Laurent, A., Prizant, B. M. & Wetherby, A. (2009). AAC and the SCERTS© Model: Incorporating AAC within a Comprehensive, Multidisciplinary Educational Program. In P. Mirenda and T. Iacono, AAC and Autism. Baltimore, MD: Brookes Publishing.
  • Prizant, B.M., Wetherby, A., Rubin, E., Laurent, A., & Rydell, P. (2002). The SCERTS model: Enhancing communication and socioemotional abilities of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Jenison Autism Journal, 14, 2-19.
  • Prizant, B.M. , Wetherby, A., Rubin, E., Rydell, P., and Laurent, A. (2003). THE SCERTS Model: A family-centered, transactional approach to enhancing communication and socioemotional abilities of young children with ASD. Infants and young children, 16, 296-316.
  • Laurent, A. C. & Rubin, E. (2004). Emotional regulation challenges in Asperger syndrome and high functioning autism. Topics in Language Disorders, 24, 4.
  • Prizant, B.M., & Wetherby, A. M. (2005) Critical considerations in enhancing communication abilities for persons with autism spectrum disorders. In F. Volkmar, A. Klin & Paul, R. (Eds.), Handbook of autism and pervasive developmental disorders (3rd Edition).
  • Wetherby, A.M., & Prizant, B.M. (Eds.) (2000). Autism spectrum disorders: A developmental, transactional perspective. Baltimore, MD: Paul Brookes Publishing Company
  • Prizant, B., Wetherby, A., & Rydell, P. (2000). Communication intervention issues for children with autism spectrum disorders. In A. Wetherby & B. Prizant (Eds.), Autism spectrum disorders: A transactional developmental perspective (volume 9), Baltimore, MD: Brookes.
  • Prizant, B.M., Schuler, A.L. Wetherby, A. M., and Rydell, P. (1997). Enhancing language and communication: Language approaches. In D. Cohen & F. Volkmar (Eds.), Handbook of autism and pervasive developmental disorders (Second Edition). New York: Wiley.
  • Rubin, E. & Laurent, A. C. (2004). Implementing a curriculum-based assessment to prioritize learning objectives in Asperger syndrome and high functioning autism. Topics in Language Disorders, 24, 4.
  • Schuler, A.L., Wetherby, A.M. & Prizant, B.M. (1997). Enhancing language and communication: Prelanguage approaches. In D. Cohen & F. Volkmar (Eds.), Handbook of autism and pervasive developmental disorders (2nd Ed.)
  • Wetherby, A. M., Prizant, B.M., & Schuler, A.L. (1997). Enhancing language and communication: Theoretical foundations. In D. Cohen & F. Volkmar (Eds.), Handbook of autism and pervasive developmental disorders (2nd Ed.)


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