Date of Award

Spring 5-19-2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts

Department

Expressive Therapies

First Advisor

Tomoyo Kawano

Abstract

This capstone project sought to explore the relationship between dance/movement therapy and autism spectrum disorder by designing and implementing a cross-lateral movement method. Cross-lateral movement is oppositional locomotion that activates a diagonal pattern of connectivity (ex: top left to bottom right). Participants (n = 41) consisted of students aged 18-22, in a college-based transition program, who presented with a variety of intellectual and developmental disabilities including ASD. Participants were divided into three groups; the first two groups performed the method twice and the third group performed the method once. Outcomes observed included positive changes in participants’ self-report of affect, motor function, and executive function. Further qualitative and quantitative research is needed in order to understand the effects of the cross-lateral movement method on the ASD population.

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