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The purpose of our study was to determine the effect of music (music with lyrics versus music with lyrics plus instruction) relative to on-task behaviors in preschool children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in a gross motor setting. Five preschool children (4 boys, 1 girl) diagnosed with ASD served as participants. A multiple baseline across participants in conjunction with an alternating-treatment design was used. For all participants, music with lyrics plus instruction increased on-task behaviors to a greater extent than did music with lyrics. The results of our study provide a better understanding of the role of music with regard to the behaviors of young children with ASD.
Dieringer is with the School of Physical Education, Sport, and Exercise Science, Ball State University, Muncie, IN. Porretta is with the School of Kinesiology, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH. Sainato is with the School of Special Education, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH.