Evaluating and Measuring Outcomes to Demonstrate the Impact of Montessori Play Therapy

 This research project will help MEfA meet its aim, 'to promote, conduct and engage in research into autism, and to publish the useful results of such research'.



·     The sample of children and families will be self-selecting - this will help to avoid bias;

·      Information about the programme will be distributed widely to ensure equity of access;

·     Children and families will be accepted onto the programme on a first-come, first-served basis.


  • Qualitative: parents and others involved in the children's day-to-day lives will contribute to questionnaires at the beginning and end of the programme;

     Quantitative: We will measure children's performance against identified indicators at the beginning and end of the programme.

Research Questions

     What concerns do early years children with autism have that securely developing children do not?

     What differences can Montessori Therapy make for these children?

     Can the reasons for any successes in the programme be

       a) identified?  b) replicated?

Research Indicators


Key Indicators include difficulty with the triad of impairment known to accompany autism:

     Social and Emotional;

     Language and Communication;

     Flexibility of Thought (Imagination).

Research Tools

     Interviews with medical and educational professionals concerned with Autism in early years children;

     Research into current magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings about brain development and damage in young children with autism.

Who is paying for the Research?

     MEfA is setting up a specific fund raising initiative to pay for the project.

Intended Use of Research Findings

     Montessori Education for Autism expects to roll out Montessori Play Therapy for children with Autism, and conditions related to Autism in a continuum;

     The findings of our research will underpin the efficacy of our work going forward, and

     will provide us with evaluations of value-for-money for our sponsors.