Responsive Communication: tuning in to people with autism – a free online video resource

This series of short films shows an extended conversation  between Phoebe Caldwell (DSc, Expert Responsive Communication Practitioner who has worked with autistic people for 45 years) and Janet Gurney (BA, PGCT, Director of Training for Us in a Bus, a service based in Surrey that supports adults and children with profound and multiple learning difficulties and autism). Phoebe’s website can be found here and the Us in a Bus website can be found here.

Phoebe and Janet discuss Responsive Communication and how this approach can be used with people with autism to promote emotional engagement and reduce distress and isolation.

The films are available to watch online for free and are not for downloading. They can be viewed in any order but were recorded in sequence, so later films may refer to material already covered, so we do recommend that you watch the films in order.

Included are two video case studies which Phoebe and Janet refer to and discuss in some detail. Whilst these case studies focus on the experience of two young adults, Responsive Communication is an approach that can be used with individuals regardless of their age, gender or ethnic origin.

This film project was made possible by a grant from The Big Lottery, for which we are very grateful.

Responsive Communication is a disposition or way of being with the person, rather than a set of techniques to be learnt or mastered.

Responsive Communication involves:

  • Taking an inside-out approach to autism (perceiving the world from the perspective of the person with autism)
  • Responding to sensory needs
  • Using body language to communicate (Intensive Interaction)
  • Responding to emotional affect (how the person is feeling) and validating their emotional experience.

To watch the films, please click here. We hope you enjoy them!