Francisco Alcantud Marín

University of Valencia

Intervention in Austism Spectrum Disorders along the live span

Participants: Fernanda de Melo Parente1; Susana Mata Irurralde2; Liliana Rojas Torres3; Yurena Alonso Esteban4; Rocío Roselló5

1University of Amazonia (Manaos); 2University of Guayaquil (Ecuador); 3 Javeriana University (Colombia); 4University of Valencia; 5Hospital Universitario Dr. Peset (Spain)

Simposium Summary

Autism Spectrum Disorders (hereinafter ASD), are neurodevelopmental disorders that present a wide variety of symptoms and levels of severity. The main symptoms are persistent deficits in communication and social interaction, and restricted, repetitive patterns of behaviour, activities and interests that cause significant alterations in the social, occupational or other areas of personal functioning. Besides these symptoms, which are considered to be the core of ASD, there are other symptoms associated in a heterogeneous way both because of the possible combinations and the intensity of these (i.e., obsessive-compulsive symptoms, aggressiveness, self-harm, unmanageable mood changes, hyperactivity and attention and concentration problems, anxiety, and sleep disorders, among others). The increase in the number of methods, techniques or strategies of intervention in children, youth and adults with ASD is only comparable to the exponential increase in prevalence rates. Current evidence supports the recognition of the effectiveness of developmentally based techniques and methods and the application of principles of behavioural analysis, including the use of structured learning scenarios, stimulus control, development of routines, natural environments, etc. However, research also suggests that not all children respond in the same way to all treatments or techniques. Different studies have shown that the application of intensive early interventions allows enhancing the brain plasticity that occurs with greater intensity in the first years of life and to reduce the characteristic symptoms of ASDs, achieving a greater development of intelligence, social skills, communication and language and improving their quality of life. This symposium will present results of intervention throughout the life cycle, from pre-school levels of early care to university and in all areas of competence (i.e., communication and language, social interaction, behavioural and sensory problems or comorbid disorders).

Short CV

Professor of Developmental and Educational Psychology at the University of Valencia. In the course of his already extensive teaching experience, he has taught in numerous disciplines of the Psychology degree and in particular, in recent years, within the area of Developmental and Educational Psychology, progressively becoming specialized in Intervention in Autism Spectrum Disorders.

He is the author of many specialized books on this subject and numerous research articles. He has participated as a researcher and as a PI in numerous national and international research projects. In 1994 he created the Access Research Unit of the University of Valencia (, in which, within the framework of a European project (UNICHANCE), different methodologies were experimented with and the Support Service for Students with Disabilities was created, managing it from then until 2008 with the Rector's Delegate for the Integration of People with Disabilities.

In this area, he is the author of books and articles on the inclusion of students with disabilities in higher education. He has been very involved in the development of accessibility measures and design for all the learning environments, particularly, the technology-assisted learning environments. In 2006 he presented a project for the creation of the University Centre for Diagnosis and Early Care (, which he has directed until June 2018. In this area, he has also published books and guides for parents on different disorders (Autism Spectrum Disorders; Childhood Cerebral Paralysis, etc.). Currently, although he continues to publish in all the above fields, his interests are focused on the development of family relationships when a child with an Autism Spectrum Disorder is present.
Go back to guest symposium