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Title: "It's not just about the horses at Equine!" : exploring perceptions of Equine Assisted therapy with adolescents with autism, their staff and therapy providers
Author: Rydzkowski, Wendy
ISNI:       0000 0004 6349 5477
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2017
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While there are established traditional interventions to help develop language and social skills in young people with autism (Anderson, 2016; White, Oswald, Ollendick & Scahill, 2009), empirical support for interventions to help with behavioural, social and emotional skills in adolescents with autism are less well supported (Williams-White, 2007). Less orthodox interventions can include Equine Assisted therapy (Borgi, Loliva, Cerino, Chiarotti, Venerosi, Bramini, Nonnis, Marcelli, Vinit, Santis, Bisacco, Fagerlie, Frascarelli, & Cirulli, 2016). In this small-scale study, Equine Assisted therapy was defined as the deliberate inclusion of a horse in a treatment plan, as recommended by (Endenburg & van Lith, 2011). This study explored perceptions of Equine Assisted therapy with three different groups; adolescent participants, staff from the school, and the therapists who designed and delivered the intervention. Using Thematic Analysis, fourteen participants were interviewed on an individual basis. Themes were created from the data on an individual, group and whole data-set basis. The global themes regarding this particular Equine Assisted therapy were that rather than providing clinical, within-child interventions, the therapy worked via the context of a group. The Equine Assisted therapy gave a context for experiential learning; it promoted emotional regulation, and it enhanced emotional wellbeing. Instead of asking why the benefits of such therapy do not necessarily extend to other settings, the researcher poses the question of how it might be possible to apply points made about Equine Assisted therapy to school -based, and general life experiences. Key words: Equine Assisted therapy, adolescents, autism, educational and child psychologist, Thematic Analysis.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Ed.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology