1st Annual Canadian Social Thinking® Providers Conference

Applying Social Thinking and Teaching Executive Function Skills: Where, When, How and with Whom?

Wednesday & Thursday, September 17 & 18, 2014

Keynote speakers:
Joanne Gerenser, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, ABA and Social Thinking
Sarah Ward, MS, CCC-SLP, Cutting Edge Strategies to Teach Executive Functioning
Michelle Garcia Winner, MA, CCC-SLP, Founder of Social Thinking
Pamela Crooke, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, New practical lessons/strategies and rubrics for authentic data

Executive Airport Plaza Hotel and Conference Centre

1st Annual Canadian Social Thinking® Providers Conference

You can also register by calling us.

Level Intermediate/Advanced
For Community Professionals Experienced with Social Thinking Techniques
Focus Pre-school through adulthood
Autism-specific? No – techniques are applicable to a wide-range of children and adults who have good verbal communication skills (Verbal IQ, 70 and above) but are challenged to use them appropriately in social situations

Page Index

About the Event

Full schedule and session descriptions now available.

  • Afternoon sessions are concurrent - attend the sessions that interest you. 
  • Download presentation handouts ahead of time for afternoon sessions. Please see your confirmation email for password. 
  • The only handouts available at the event are for the keynotes. 

The 1st Annual Canadian Social Thinking® Providers Conference is an opportunity for Canadian practitioners of Social Thinking to come together to learn, share ideas and network. As the international “Social Thinking movement” grows, the hope is for attendees to gain knowledge and avoid “re-creating the wheel” as they develop practical programs and services allowing for them to build on what others have shared.

Purpose of the Conference – Applying Social Thinking Strategies in Canada

  • Encourage professionals who are running Social Thinking programs in schools, hospitals and private practice settings to come together to network, brainstorm and problem-solve the delivery of Social Thinking services.
  • Report on research projects completed or currently in progress.
  • Provide a means for sharing new and diverse topics related to Social Thinking and the treatment of individuals with social learning challenges.
  • Provide an opportunity for professionals, individually or in teams to share their unique diagnostic, treatment or service delivery models related to Social Thinking.
  • Share new data collection or qualitative assessment methods to assist professionals and students on the application of teaching Social Thinking concepts.
  • Explore concerns of family members and provide Social Thinking strategies to use in the home.

About the Presenters

Joanne Gerenser, Ph.D., CCC-SLP – Executive Director of Eden II Programs, Staten Island, NY

Joanne Gerenser received her Ph.D. in Speech and Hearing Science at the City University of New York Graduate Center. She is an adjunct Assistant Professor at Brooklyn College as well as Penn State University. Dr. Gerenser has authored a number of book chapters and articles on autism and has won numerous awards for her work with people with autism. She is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Speech-Language Pathology and Applied Behavior Analysis and sits on a number of Professional Advisory Boards for programs serving children and adults with autism in the U.S. and abroad.

Sarah Ward, MS, CCC-SLP – Co-Director of Cognitive Connections, Concord, Massachusetts

Sarah Ward has over 15 years of experience in diagnostic evaluations, treatment and case management of children, adolescents and adults with a wide range of developmental and acquired brain based learning difficulties and behavioral problems, including those with ASD. She is dedicated to developing and implementing innovative treatment strategies to remediate executive function challenges. A popular speaker, Sarah regularly presents locally, nationally and internationally on the topic of executive functions to a variety of professional and parent organizations, school and lay groups. and has presented to and consulted with almost 400 public and private schools in Massachusetts and across the United States.

Michelle Garcia Winner, MA, CCC-SLP – Founder of Social Thinking, Social Thinking Centre, San Jose

Michelle Garcia Winner is a speech language pathologist who specializes in the treatment of students with social cognitive deficits at the Social Thinking Center, her clinic in San Jose, California. After years of working in schools and in private practice with a wide-range of individuals on the autism spectrum, Social Thinking was born out of necessity as a way to reach those “bright but socially clueless students” who needed more information than just what social skill to use. She coined the term “Social Thinking®” in the mid-1990s and continues to evolve the Social Thinking framework that today includes information, vocabulary, curriculum, and strategies that help individuals with social learning challenges become better social thinkers. Her years of experience demonstrated that lessons taught through Social Thinking could apply across a range of disorders that extends beyond ASD, to individuals with ADHD, nonverbal learning challenges, as well as those with head injuries or emotional learning challenges.

Pamela Crooke, Ph.D., CCC-SLP – Director of Research and Clinical Operations and Senior Therapist, Social Thinking Center in San Jose

Pamela J. Crooke earned her Ph.D. in Speech Language Pathology from the University of Washington in Seattle. Prior to joining the Social Thinking team in San Jose, she coordinated the Autism interdisciplinary clinical services at the Tucson Alliance for Autism in Arizona, served as a clinical and academic faculty member of three universities, and worked in the Arizona public schools for 15 years. Dr. Crooke speaks widely on Social Thinking internationally and has co-authored, with Michelle Garcia Winner, four award-winning books. Treatment efficacy in social and relational therapies for individuals with high-functioning autism remains Dr. Crooke’s primary area of interest.

Workshop Schedule


Date Parents, Para-Pros & Students Professionals
Early Bird Rate ends August 6th, 2014 $275 $350
Regular Rate ends September 8th, 2014 $325 $375
Late Rate begins September 9th, 2014 $350 $400


Bursaries for low-income participants and/or those travelling from outside their home regions to an event are available for B.C. residents. Call ACT's office for more information or emailinfo@actcommunity.ca with your request prior to registering. ACT provided $12,500 in bursaries in 2013 and gratefully accepts donations to our bursary fund. More Bursary Information >

Autism Funding

Parents who receive Autism Funding may use 20% of the total for equipment, books, training and travel costs. ACT's live events are considered eligible expenses by the Autism Funding Branch.
More Autism Funding Information >