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Addressing Food: Overselectivity in Young Children with Autism


This session will include descriptions of common behaviorally-based eating challenges for children with autism, describe the functions of food-refusal behaviors, and give parents and therapists strategies to help widen children's food choices. Behavior analytic strategies on how to address issues such as picky eating, food aversions, tantrums and other eating challenges will be addressed with practical tips for making meal times more reinforcing for all involved.

About the Presenter(s)

Elise Summa

Elise Summa

Elise Summa, M.A., BCBA has worked with individuals with autism and related disabilities for 15 years. She has worked at the UF Jacksonville CARD for 10 of those years. Her master's is in clinical counseling and she did post-baccalaureate work in applied behavior analysis. Her interests include verbal behavior and especially helping individuals on the spectrum conquer their anxieties around food and grow to enjoy eating a wider repertoire of healthy foods.