Visual schedules

Visual schedules use a series of pictures to communicate a series of activities or the steps of a specific activity.[1][2] They are often used to help children understand and manage the daily events in their lives.[3] They can be created using pictures, photographs, or written words, depending upon the ability of the child. Visual schedules are placed on a schedule board or notebook in order to provide a clear expectation for the child. Ideally, visual schedules are introduced with adult guidance that gradually decreases with time.[3][4] They are frequently introduced as a component of speech therapy, but can also be used at school and at home.[5]

A recent online survey found that 43.2% of parents of autistic children use visual schedules.[6]


  1. ^ Bopp, K.D., et al. 2004. "Speech-language pathologists' roles in the delivery of positive behavior support for individuals with developmental disabilities." Am.J Speech Lang Pathol. 13(1):5-19.
  2. ^ Wheeler, J.J., and S.L. Carter. 1998. "Using Visual Cues in the Classroom for Learners with Autism as a Method for Promoting Positive Behavior." B.C.Journal of Special Education v21 n3 p64-73 1998.
  3. ^ a b Kimball, J.W., et al. 2003. "Lights, Camera, Action! Using Engaging Computer-Cued Activity Schedules." TEACHING Exceptional Children v36 n1 p40-45 Sep-Oct 2003.
  4. ^ Bryan, L.C., and D.L. Gast. 2000. "Teaching on-task and on-schedule behaviors to high-functioning children with autism via picture activity schedules." J Autism Dev.Disord. 30(6):553-567.
  5. ^ Morrison, R.S., et al. 2002. "Increasing Play Skills of Children with Autism Using Activity Schedules and Correspondence Training." Journal of Early Intervention v25 n1 p58-72 Win-Spr 2002.
  6. ^ Green, V.A., K.A. Pituch, J. Itchon, A. Choi, M. O'Reilly, J. Sigafoos, "Internet survey of treatments used by parents of children with autism," Res Dev Disabil, 2006, 27(1):70-84.