Everything we do at The Autism Program (TAP) is designed to provide a network of resources for individuals in Illinois with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Our state is home to many diverse communities with widely varying resources, some of which are complex and difficult to navigate for the disability community at large, and especially for individuals with an ASD. Therefore, TAP began the Accessibility Initiative, in order to assist individuals in better using resources in their communities.
TAP has created a basic format, consisting of explanations about what to expect at different community locations (Social Guides) and storyboards (Visual Schedules), often used by those with an ASD to outline a series of events. These elements help individuals understand and enjoy the experience of different resources, and become more independent community members.
There are three levels of Social Guides:
Level 1: This level is best for a nonreader or beginner reader, and primarily consist of artwork to convey concepts.
Level 2: This level is best for emerging readers, able to sound out and understand words, and pares sentences and artwork.
Level 3: This level is for fluent readers and relies mostly on written communication.