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Self-Management (SM)

Self-management (SM) interventions help learners with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) learn to independently regulate their own behaviors and act appropriately in a variety of home, school, and community-based situations.


Self-management (SM) involves teaching learners with ASD to discriminate between appropriate and inappropriate behaviors, accurately monitor and record their own behaviors, and reinforce themselves for behaving appropriately. Although learners may initially require adult support to accurately record behaviors and provide self-reinforcement, this support is faded over time. Self-management is often used in conjunction with other evidence-based practices including modeling, video modeling, and visual supports.

SM meets evidence-based criteria with 10 single-case design studies. According to the evidence-based studies, this intervention has been effective for preschoolers (3–5 years) to young adults (19–22 years) with ASD. SM can be used effectively to address social, communication, behavior, play, school-readiness, academic, and vocational skills.

Brief Adapted from

Brock, M. E. (2013). Self-management (SM) fact sheet. Chapel Hill, NC: The University of North Carolina, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Neitzel, J. & Busick, M. (2009). Overview of self-management. Chapel Hill, NC: National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, The University of North Carolina.

Research Summary

Ages (yrs) Skills Settings Outcome
3–21 years Social, daily living, academic, behavior, communication School, home, clinic, community
*The information found in the Research Summary table is updated yearly following a literature review of new research and this age range reflects information from this review.

Outcomes:     Evidence-based     Emerging     No evidence     Comprehensive

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