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Donia Fahim

Special Education



Donia Fahim is an Assistant Professor, Speech and Language Pathologist and Educational Consultant. She obtained her B.Sc., M.A and Ph.D. from the University of London. She is a certified member of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists. She worked for several years in London as a Speech and Language Therapist and then worked in Africa and the Middle East for 10 years. Amongst her roles she was the Clinical Director and founding member of The Egyptian Society for Developing Skills of Special Needs Children. She was also head of the Speech and Language Therapy Department and the Clinical Director and founder of the Early Intervention Program at the Learning Resource Centre in Cairo. She has conducted workshops and consultations in Nigeria, Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Bahra and Lebanon. Dr. Fahim was trained in 1998 in Applied Verbal Behavior by James Partington and contributed to the Arabic Assessment of Basic Language and Learning Skills. She has been teaching this method for more than eleven years in Africa and the Middle East.

Description of research:

Dr Fahim’s special areas of interest are the Autism Spectrum Disorders in young children, specifically related to methods of intervention with parents as well as the use of augmentative communication systems. She also researches Specific language Impairment in children speaking Arabic and English. She has an ongoing interest in designing treatment programs and workshops for parents and professionals in developing countries. She is a founding member of Autism Africa and a member of the Educational Committee of the Arab Autism Network. She has consulted for numerous NGOs, films and television productions in the Middle East that have promoted Autism across the region. She has appeared on many programs, regional television and media channels, such as MBC1, for which she contributed to and appeared on a series of five episodes on the Green Apple program. She also consulted on El-Torbini, the first Arabic film depicting an adult with Autism.

She continues to provide training and support to special education teachers, parents and clinicians in Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Nigeria. She is currently working on developing a teacher certification to train early childhood special education teachers in Africa.

Her current research is on examining the effects of cross-cultural and cross-linguistic interventions with young Autism Spectrum Disordered children. She is also examining the outcomes of an intervention approach, which combines both Applied Verbal Behavioral Analysis techniques with Parent-Child interaction therapy and has been successfully used with ASD children in Europe, Africa, Asia and the US.


She has presented papers at many leading international conferences such as the UNESCO Autism conference in April 2004, the Annual Autism Conference in Egypt, the 2nd World Autism Congress and Exhibition hosted in South Africa in October 2006, the Stockholm Annual Autism Conference in August 2007 and the NATTAP conference in Ohio in 2007, 2008 and 2009.