Honest Conversations in Autism-self-study

Honest Conversations in Autism
Rachel Dorsey MS, CCC-SLP, Autistic SLP
Crystal Udehn, MA CCC-SLP
Aislyn Baker, Teen with Autism
Dr. Temple Grandin

Course Information

This session addressed neurodiversity, communication, social communication, social masking, and independence issues in the area of autism spectrum disorders from the perspective of  individuals with autism. Participants learned about the perspectives of an individual’s with autism regarding experiences learning about social skills, functional communication and self-advocacy.

ASHA: 0.2


CA SLPAHB: 2.0  Self-Study

CMH: 2.0 Self-Study

Dr. Temple Grandin was born in Boston, Massachusetts. Temple’s achievements are remarkable because she was an autistic child. At age two she had no speech and all the signs of severe
autism. Fortunately, her mother defied the advice of the doctors and kept her out of an institution. Many hours of speech therapy, and intensive teaching enabled Temple to learn speech. As a teenager, life was hard with constant teasing. Mentoring by her high school science teacher and her aunt on her ranch in Arizona motivated Temple to study and pursue a career as a scientist and livestock equipment designer. Dr. Temple Grandin obtained her B.A. at Franklin Pierce College in 1970. In 1974 she was employed as Livestock Editor for the Arizona Farmer Ranchman and also worked for Corral Industries on equipment design. In 1975 she earned her M.S. in Animal Science at Arizona State University for her work on the behavior of cattle in different squeeze chutes. Dr. Grandin was awarded her Ph.D in Animal Science from the University of Illinois in 1989 and is currently a Professor at Colorado State University. She has done extensive work on the design of handling facilities. Half the cattle in the U.S. and Canada are handled in equipment she has designed for meat plants. Other professional activities include developing animal welfare guidelines for the meat industry and consulting with McDonalds, Wendy’s International, Burger King, and other companies on animal welfare.

Rachel Dorsey, MS, CCC-SLP went to The University of Wisconsin-Madison for her graduate degree. She moved to upstate NY and worked in home and community based early intervention and preschool settings alongside private practice clinic. Rachel received her autism diagnosis in February 2020 and her accompanying ADHD diagnosis in August 2020. The summer of 2020 she started her business Rachel Dorsey: Autistic SLP, LLC aimed at consulting professionals, coaching professionals, and educating those who work with autistic individuals or have autistic family members on neurodiversity-aligned therapy practices. Rachel aims to foster positive self-concept in autistic people. She has coauthored an article in the ASHA Leader and been featured in the ASHA Voices Podcast, both discussing autism-friendly therapy practices

Crystal Udehn is a licensed and certified SLP. She has been involved with working with children with social language disabilities for almost 20 years and has seen the field change dramatically. She first became interested in social language when she recognized how similar her students’ struggles were to her struggles with social language growing up. She is a mother to 2 teens with Autism. When she isn’t working, she and her family enjoy sharing their lives with many pets, including 4 cats, 1 dog, and 4 demanding parrots. 

Aislinn Baker is a 15 year old who has been diagnosed with Autism and Anxiety.  She is very creative both artistically and musically and uses those tools to support her mental health.  Aislinn has personal experience related to how social skills impact mental health and anxiety and advocates for other teens who experience this as well.  She is gifted with animals and helps her mother care for all their spoiled pets.


  1. identify views/perspectives on neurodiversity, social communication, social masking and independence of a person with ASD
  2. identify views/perspectives on social skills, social communication and self-advocacy of a person with ASD
  3. discuss recommendations for social skills, social communication and self-advocacy for students with ASD

This course must be watched in its entirety. In order to receive the CMH or the CEU certificate, a quiz is required to be completed with 80% success.

Financial: Dr. Grandin received a speaking honorarium for this presentation. Dr. Grandin is author of numerous books about her experiences as a person with ASD.

Non-Financial: Dr. Grandin is an autistic individual.

Financial: Rachel Dorsey received a speaking honorarium for this presentation. 

Non-Financial: Rachel is an autistic SLP who aims to foster positive self-concept in autistic people.

Financial: Crystal Udehn received a speaking honorarium for this presentation. 

Non-Financial: Crystal is a mother of an autistic teen.

Financial: Aislyn Baker received a speaking honorarium for this presentation. 

Non-Financial: Aislyn is an autistic teen. 

5 mins – Disclosures, Introduction

105 mins                      Panel Discussions

10 mins                      Recommendations, Discussion




This program is offered for 0.2 ASHA CEUs (Intermediate level, Professional area).

Our Guarantee. Lavi Institute seeks to maintain and enhance our reputation of providing you with high quality educational services for the speech pathology industry. If you attend one of our seminars or webinars and do not receive the educational and professional benefits described in our literature, or have some other professional complaint, please let us know in writing within seven days of attending our seminars/webinars. We value complaints as they assist us to improve our products, services and customer service. Lavi Institute is committed to being responsive to the needs and concerns of our customers or potential customers and to resolving your complaint as quickly as possible. You may contact us at www.laviinstitute.com/contact 

Accommodations. Contact Dr. Lavi (909) 724-8564 or [email protected]  if you require accommodations such as video course transcripts or video captioning.

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