Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 366–380

Comparative Efficacy of LEAP, TEACCH and Non-Model-Specific Special Education Programs for Preschoolers with Autism Spectrum Disorders


    • Division of Occupational Science and Occupational TherapyUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Kara Hume
    • FPG Child Development InstituteUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Matthew T. McBee
    • Educational and Quantitative PsychologyEast Tennessee State University
  • Michael Alessandri
    • Center for Autism and Related DisabilitiesUniversity of Miami
    • Department of Psychology and PediatricsUniversity of Miami
  • Anibal Gutierrez
    • Department of PsychologyFlorida International University
  • LeAnne Johnson
    • Special Education ProgramsUniversity of Minnesota
  • Laurie Sperry
    • Autism Centre of Excellence, School of Arts, Education and LawGriffith University
  • Samuel L. Odom
    • FGP Child Development CenterUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
    • School of EducationUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10803-013-1877-9

Cite this article as:
Boyd, B.A., Hume, K., McBee, M.T. et al. J Autism Dev Disord (2014) 44: 366. doi:10.1007/s10803-013-1877-9


LEAP and TEACCH represent two comprehensive treatment models (CTMs) that have been widely used across several decades to educate young children with autism spectrum disorders. The purpose of this quasi-experimental study was to compare high fidelity LEAP (n = 22) and TEACCH (n = 25) classrooms to each other and a control condition (n = 28), in which teachers in high quality special education programs used non-model-specific practices. A total of 198 children were included in data analysis. Across conditions, children’s performances improved over time. This study raises issues of the replication of effects for CTMs, and whether having access to a high quality special education program is as beneficial as access to a specific CTM.


Comparative effectivenessComprehensive treatmentsEfficacyInterventionLEAPTEACCH

Supplementary material

10803_2013_1877_MOESM1_ESM.doc (34 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 34 kb)
10803_2013_1877_MOESM2_ESM.doc (98 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOC 98 kb)

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013