Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Special Education and Communication Disorders

First Advisor

Arleen Michael

Second Advisor

John E. Christiensen

Third Advisor

John W. Hill


The child’s behavioral and communicative skills are comprised of verbal and nonverbal components. The importance of a nonverbal context for smooth communication and interaction is often only evident when it is absent or defective, such as in children with severe behavioral disorders (autistic, schizophrenic). Actions and the way of saying things, rather than words, are essentially important since they are used deliberately or inadvertently to convey feelings or attitudes and determine the effectiveness of social and working relationships.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of Special Education and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Science University of Nebraska at Omaha.