Connecting with Intensive Interaction

Connecting with Intensive Interaction

with Graham Firth

Improving communication for people with learning disabilities and/or autism

Welcome to our ‘Connecting with Intensive Interaction’ website.

On this website you will find a lot of useful information about our social communication approach called Intensive Interaction. This website will help you to understand what Intensive Interaction is, who it is for, how best to use it and what benefits it can bring.

You can also read Graham Firth’s ‘Connecting with Intensive Interaction‘ blog series, and you can sign up at the bottom of this page to be notified of all new posts by email.

If you are a parent, a carer, a teacher, a health professional, or anyone else who is interested in Intensive Interaction, then I hope that you will find something useful here.

What is Intensive Interaction?

Intensive Interaction is an approach that can help people with learning disabilities and/or autism, and those who care for or support them, to better communicate. Intensive Interaction is used by parents, carers, teachers and many others to better communicate with someone (a child or adult) who finds communicating difficult, most usually because of a learning disability or autism.

By simply focusing on what a person can do, and joining in with their current communication behaviours, Intensive Interaction helps us to build better communication, and thus to better socially connect with those people who are special to us. It helps us to enjoy each other’s company even more!

What are the benefits of Intensive Interaction?

• Intensive Interaction can help to develop a person’s fundamental social communication abilities.
• Intensive Interaction can help a person with a communication or social impairment to increase or improve their positive communication behaviours.
• Intensive Interaction can help build better social relationships between someone with a communication or social impairment and those people who care for or support them.

For more information regarding Intensive Interaction, check out the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ page here.

‘By spending time with someone using Intensive Interaction we are valuing them: respecting them and meeting their basic human need to make meaningful and satisfying relationships, which is central for a decent quality of life’


Clinical Psychologist, UK.
Read the latest from Graham Firth’s ‘Connecting with Intensive Interaction Blog’ here:

‘Silent Minority’ TV documentary … the 40th anniversary

The TV documentary ‘Silent Minority’ was first shown on British TV 40 years ago this week – it perhaps did more than anything else to evidence the degrading and inhuman living conditions suffered by many people with learning disabilities in large scale institutional care at the time.
Read on for more…

Is what I am doing Intensive Interaction or not?

So, how do I know if I am doing Intensive Interaction with a person?
For my Blog this week I am reproducing a slightly abridged section of the FAQs document from the Intensive Interaction ‘Adult Services Documents’ and ‘Curriculum Documents for Schools’ packs.

On Dave Hewett and the II Institute …

A personal acknowledgement of the unstinting and vital work of Dr Dave Hewett OBE as he steps back from his leading role and directorship of the Intensive Interaction Institute.

30 Years of Intensive Interaction Research

This Blog revisits the first published Intensive Interaction research paper (that is now nearly 30 years old) – illustrating just how long-standing and well-established Intensive Interaction research now is.

Graham Firth talking about Intensive Interaction at the 2019 CDKL5 Alliance Research and Family Conference , about on how it can be used with people with CDKL5.

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