Autism Spectrum Disorder At-A-Glance:

  • Occurs before the age of 3 years
  • Qualitative impairment in social engagement
  • Qualitative impairment in communication
  • Restricted, repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interests, and activities

(Rellini et al., 2004)

The Diagnostic Process For Autism Spectrum Disorder:

The diagnostic process will consist of a multidisciplinary assessment procedure that includes a review of medical records, detailed developmental history, description of current behaviors, assessment of cognitive/language abilities and observations of functioning in a variety of settings (American Psychiatric Association, 2004). Upon completion of the evaluation, a comprehensive psychological report is developed which includes a diagnosis and treatment recommendations.

Diagnostic Assessments:

Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised (ADI-R): Is a structured interview used for diagnosing autism, planning treatment, and distinguishing autism from other developmental disorders.

Autism Diagnostic Observation Scale (ADOS): Is a standardized observational instrument that assesses symptoms of autism in the areas of communication, socialization, toy play and stereotyped behaviors and restricted interests through various activities designed to elicit certain behaviors.

Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales (VABS): Semi-structured parent interview that measures adaptive behavior and provides an estimate of overall adaptive functioning.

Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS): A scale that assesses behavior in 14 domains that are generally affected by severe problems in autism.