Parent- and Self-Reported Social Skills Importance in Autism Spectrum Disorder
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While social skills are commonly assessed in autism spectrum disorder (ASD), little is known about individuals’ and families’ beliefs regarding importance of these skills. Seventy-four parents and their children with ASD rated social skills importance and severity, as well as ASD-specific deficit severity. Parents and youth rated social skills as important overall; however, parents reported assertion and self-control to be more important than their children did. Severity and importance did not correlate overall. However, parent-report of responsibility deficits and importance were positively correlated, while youth-report of assertiveness deficits and importance were negatively correlated. Finally, ASD-specific social deficits were positively correlated with parent reported importance, but negatively correlated with child reported importance. Social skills importance ratings merit consideration in ASD assessment.
KeywordsSocial skills Importance Autism spectrum disorder Parent Child Informant perspectives
The authors would like to thank the participating families, whose valuable time and dedication made this study possible. This research was partially supported by the Jefferson Scholars’ Foundation, the University of Virginia Center for Children, Families, and the Law, the International Max Planck Research School on the Life Course, and Commonwealth Autism Services to Matthew Lerner. The sponsors of the study had no role in study design, data interpretation, or writing of the report. Portions of these analyses were presented at the 2015 Association for Psychological Science Convention and 2015 Society for Research in Child Development Biennial Meeting.
Rankin & Lerner contributed to all aspects of data preparation and analysis, and manuscript writing. Lerner conducted data collection. Weber & Kang contributed to manuscript writing, editing, and revision, and literature review.
Compliance with Ethical Standard
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
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