, Volume 30, Issue 5, pp 399-409

Interventions That Facilitate Socialization in Children with Autism

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Social dysfunction is perhaps the most defining and handicapping feature of autism. Improved social functioning has long been considered one of the most important intervention outcomes. A variety of social interventions have been designed, empirically examined, and published in the autism literature. Children with autism have been found to be responsive to a wide variety of interventions aimed at increasing their social engagement with others, both adults and peers. Successful strategies employing peer-mediated approaches and peer tutoring have involved typically developing peers. Furthermore, several studies have demonstrated that social engagement directly affects other important behaviors like language, even when these behaviors are not specifically targeted by the teaching program. Thus, while an area of severe involvement, social behavior is also responsive to intervention.