School Psychology Forum

Expanding the Role of School Psychologists for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders
Volume 5, Issue 4 (Winter 2011 )

Editor: Steven R. Shaw

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  • Sleep Disorder Symptoms in Children With Low-Functioning Autism

    By Joseph M. Mahoney & Linda C. Caterino

    pp. 128-140

    ABSTRACT: Although there is evidence that children with low-functioning autism experience sleep disturbance at a higher rate than typically developing peers, there is inconsistency in the results of previous research. The identification of specific sleep problems experienced more often by children with autism may lead to greater accuracy of diagnosis and treatment. The present study assessed sleep disorder symptoms in affected children and typically developing controls while addressing methodological issues in the existing literature. Parents completed a norm-referenced measure of sleep disorder symptoms. Children with autism scored significantly higher than matched typically developing children on symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea syndrome, periodic limb movement disorder, and sleep disorder symptoms in general. A moderate correlation was also found between sleep disorder symptoms and module 1 of the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic.

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  • Social Skills Interventions for Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder

    By Jillian M. Bellinger, Emily H. Perlman, & James C. DiPerna

    pp. 141-159

    ABSTRACT: Given that social skill difficulties are one of the defining features of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), effective interventions ameliorating social skills deficits have potential to benefit children with ASD and their families. Fortunately, researchers are continually developing and examining techniques that support this population and produce beneficial, generalizable, and lasting social skill gains. The present study presents a systematic review of 21 single-case and 11 group design studies evaluating the effectiveness of social skills interventions for individuals with ASD. Specific information regarding targeted behaviors, intervention techniques, and calculated effect sizes are reported. In addition, intervention methods that led to the most effective outcomes are highlighted.

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