College of Education

Meadan Family Lab

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What is the CoCare PD program?

The Coaching Caregivers Professional Development (CoCare PD) program teaches early intervention (EI) service providers how to train and coach caregivers via . Nurturing their partnerships with families and supporting caregivers in the use of evidence-based practices with their young children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and/or developmental disabilities (DD). The internet-based Parent-Implemented Communication Strategies program (i-PiCS; Meadan et al., 2016) was used as the vehicle for delivering the content. 

Empowering Service Providers:
El service providers receive training and support in (a) applying evidence-based naturalistic communication teaching strategies, (b) coaching caregivers to use these strategies, and (c) incorporating  into their service delivery model.

Training and Coaching Caregivers:
Caregivers get support from El service providers learning how to use the evidence-based communication teaching strategies after they complete online training at their own pace. Service providers coach caregiver how to use naturalistic communication teaching strategies.

Promoting Children’s Communication:
Because their caregivers are now empowered to use effective teaching strategies, children’s communication skills improve. Additionally, service providers are able to support caregivers of multiple children on their caseload to use of the naturalistic communication teaching strategies. Service providers find the program to be helpful in encouraging parent participation during home visiting sessions. 



*Service provider flowchart 

© 2018 Dr. Hedda Meadan, University of Illinois 



Cascading Coaching Model:

El service providers receive support in the training and coaching of caregivers and incorporating teleparactice into the ways they support and connect with families. Then, the service provider teaches and coaches caregivers to use four evidence-based, naturalistic communication teaching strategies to support their child's social communication skills: environment arrangement, modeling, mand-modeling, and time delay.

*Caregiver working with the i-PiCS team researcher through video chat