This study evaluated the effectiveness of an internet accessed training program that included Theory of Mind-based guidance, video models, visual supports, and virtual reality practice sessions in teaching appropriate job interview skills to individuals with high functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders. In a randomized study, twenty-two youth, ages 16–19, were evaluated during two employment interviews. Half received a training intervention following the initial interview and the half who served as a contrast group did not. Their performance pre and post intervention was assessed by four independent raters using a scale that included evaluation of both Content and Delivery. Results suggest that youth who completed the JobTIPS employment program demonstrated significantly more effective verbal content skills than those who did not.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
American Psychiatric Association. (2000). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (Revised 4th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.
Baron-Cohen, S., Tager-Fulsberg, H., & Cohen, D. J. (2000). Understanding other minds: Perspectives from developmental cognitive neuroscience. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Barrick, M. R., Dustin, S. L., Giluk, T. L., Stewart, G. L., & Shaffer, J. A. (2012). Candidate characteristics driving initial impressions during rapport building: Implications for employment interview validity. Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 85(2), 330–352.
Barrick, M. R., Shaffer, J. A., & DeGrassi, S. W. (2009). What you see may not be what you get: Relationships among self-presentation tactics and ratings of interview and job performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 94(6), 1394–1411.
Bellini, S., & Akullian, J. (2007). A meta-analysis of video modeling and video self- modeling interventions for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders. Exceptional Children, 73, 264–287.
Bernard-Ripoll, S. (2007). Using a self-as model video combined with social stories to help a child with Asperger syndrome understand emotions. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 22(2), 100–106.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2012). Prevalence of autism spectrum disorders: Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, United States, 2008. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly, 61(SS03), 1–19. Downloaded on May 1, 2012, from http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/ss6103a1.htm?s_cid=ss6103a1_w.
Charlop-Christy, M. H., & Daneshvar, S. (2003). Using video modeling to teach perspective taking to children with autism. Journal of Positive Behavioral Interventions, 5(1), 12–21.
Cimera, R. E., & Cowan, R. J. (2009). The costs of services and employment outcomes achieved by adults with autism in the US. Autism, 13(3), 285–302.
Constantino, J. N., & Gruber, C. P. (2005). Social responsiveness scale (SRS). Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services.
DiGennaro Reed, F. D., Hyman, S. R., & Hirst, J. M. (2011). Applications of technology to teach social skills to children with autism. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 5, 1003–1010.
Elksin, N., & Elksin, L. (2001). Adolescents with disabilities: The need for occupational social skills training. Exceptionality, 9(1&2), 91–105.
Gal, E., Meir, A. B., & Katz, N. (2013). Development and reliability of the Autism Work Skills Questionnaire (AWSQ). The American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 67(1), e1–e5.
Gelbar, N., Anderson, C., McCarthy, S., & Buggey, T. (2012). Video self modeling as an intervention strategy for individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Psychology in the Schools, 49(1), 15–22.
Golan, O., & Baron-Cohen, S. (2006). Systemizing empathy: Teaching adults with Asperger syndrome or high-functioning autism to recognize complex emotions using interactive multimedia. Development and Psychopathology, 18, 591–617.
Hendricks, D. (2010). Employment and adults with autism spectrum disorders: Challenges and strategies for success. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 32, 125–134.
Hollingshead, A. B. (2011). Four factor index of social status. Yale Journal of Sociology, 8, 21–51.
Huffcutt, A. I., Conway, J. M., Roth, P. L., & Stone, N. J. (2001). Identification and meta-analytic assessment of psychological constructs measured in employment interviews. Journal of Applied Psychology, 86, 897–913.
Hume, K., Loftin, R., & Lantz, J. (2009). Increasing independence in autism spectrum disorders: A review of three focused interventions. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 39(9), 1329–1338.
Janz, T. (1982). Initial comparisons of patterned behavior description interviews versus unstructured interviews. Journal of Applied Psychology, 67(5), 577–580.
Kandalaft, M., Didehbani, N., Krawczyk, D., Allen, T., & Chapman, S. (2013). Virtual reality social cognition training for young adults with high-functioning autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 43, 34–44.
Latham, G. P., Saari, L. M., Purseil, E. D., & Campion, M. A. (1980). The situational interview. Journal of Applied Psychology, 65, 422–427.
Latham, G. P., & Sue-Chan, C. (1999). A meta-analysis of the situational interview: An enumerative review of reasons for its validity. Canadian Psychology, 40(1), 56–67.
Lopata, C., Thomeer, M. L., Volker, M. A., Toomey, J. A., Nida, R. E., Lee, G. K., et al. (2010). RCT of a manualized social treatment for high-functioning autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 40(11), 1297–1310.
Migliore, A., Timmons, J., Butterworth, J., & Lugas, J. (2012). Predictors of employment and postsecondary education of youth with autism. Rehabilitation Counseling Bulletin, 55(3), 176–184.
Mineo, B. A., Ziegler, W., Gill, S., & Salkin, D. (2009). Engagement with electronic screen media among students with autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 39, 172–187.
Mitchell, P., Parsons, S., & Leonard, A. (2007). Using virtual environments for teaching social understanding to 6 adolescents with autistic spectrum disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 37(3), 589–600.
Montgomery, J., Storey, K., Post, M., & Lemley, J. (2011). The use of auditory prompting systems for increasing independent performance of students with autism in employment training. International Journal of Rehabilitation Research, 34(4), 330–335.
Moore, D., Cheng, Y., McGrath, P., & Powell, N. (2005). Collaborative virtual environment technology for people with autism. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 20(4), 231–243.
National Autism Center. (2009). National Standards Report. Retrieved August, 25, 2011 from http://www.nationalautismcenter.org/nsp/.
National Research Council. (2001). Educating children with autism. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
Nuemberger, J. E., Ringdahl, J. E., Vargo, K. K., Crumpecker, A. C., & Gunnarsson, K. F. (2013). Using a behavioral skills training package to teach conversation skills to young adults with autism spectrum disorders. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 7(2), 411–417.
Ozonoff, S., & Miller, J. N. (1995). Teaching theory of mind: A new approach to social skills training for individuals with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 25, 415–433.
Parsons, S., & Mitchell, P. (2002). The potential of virtual reality in social skills training for people with autistic spectrum disorders. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 46, 430–443.
Posthuma, R. A., Morgeson, F. P., & Campion, M. A. (2002). Beyond employment interview validity: A comprehensive narrative review of recent research and trends over time. Personnel Psychology, 55, 1–81.
Reichow, B., & Volkmar, F. (2010). Social skills interventions for individuals with autism: Evaluation for evidence-based practices within a best evidence synthesis framework. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 40(2), 149–166.
Rutkowshi, S., Daston, M., Van Kuiken, D., & Reihle, E. (2006). Project SEARCH: A demand-side model of high school transition. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 25, 85–96.
Shattuck, P. T., Narendorf, S. C., Cooper, B., Sterzing, P. R., Wagner, M., & Taylor, J. L. (2012). Postsecondary education and employment among youth with an autism spectrum disorder. Pediatrics, 129(6), 1042–1049.
Strickland, D., Marcus, L. M., Mesibov, G. B., & Hogan, K. (1996). Brief report: Two case studies using virtual reality as a learning tool for autistic children. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 26, 651–659.
Taylor, J. L., & Seltzer, M. M. (2011). Employment and post-secondary educational activities for young adults with autism spectrum disorders during the transition to adulthood. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 41(5), 566–574.
TEACCH Supported Employment Program. (2013). Retrieved January 17, 2013 from http://teacch.com/intervention-services/supported-employment.
Turner-Brown, L. M., Perry, T. D., Dichter, G. S., Bodfish, J. W., & Penn, D. L. (2008). Brief report: Feasibility of social cognition and interaction training for adults with high functioning autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 38, 1777–1784.
Volkmar, F. R., State, M., & Klin, A. (2009). Autism and autism spectrum disorders: Diagnostic issues for the coming decade. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 50, 108–115.
Westbrook, J. D., Nye, C., Fong, C. J., Wan, J. T., Cortopassi, T., & Martin, F. H. (2012). Adult employment assistance services for persons with autism spectrum disorders: Effects on employment outcomes. Campbell Systematic Reviews, 5. Mathematica Policy Research Reports.
Research was supported by NIH/NIMH Grant # RC1MH088812 JobTIPS: An Employment Preparation Program for Adolescents and Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder to Dr. Strickland. We want to thank the following for their help in carrying out this research: Sharron Paige, Elles Taddeo, Montse Santacana, Charmaine Mohipp, Christopher Foster and Sandra McEwen.
About this article
Cite this article
Strickland, D.C., Coles, C.D. & Southern, L.B. JobTIPS: A Transition to Employment Program for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders. J Autism Dev Disord 43, 2472–2483 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-013-1800-4
- Theory of Mind