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J Autism Dev Disord. 2009 Sep;39(9):1268-77. doi: 10.1007/s10803-009-0741-4. Epub 2009 Apr 14.

Social competence and social skills training and intervention for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders.

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Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital/YouthCare, Harvard Medical School, Suite A200, Wellesley, MA 02481, USA.


This study examined the effectiveness of a 30 week social competence and social skills group intervention program with children, ages 7-11, diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Eighteen children with ASD were assessed with pretreatment and posttreatment measures on the Walker-McConnell Scale (WMS) and the MGH YouthCare Social Competence Development Scale. Each received the 30-week intervention program. For comparison, a matched sample of ten non-ASD children was also assessed, but received no treatment. The findings indicated that each ASD intervention group demonstrated significant gains on the WMS and significant improvement in the areas of anxiety management, joint attention, and flexibility/transitions. Results suggest that this approach can be effective in improving core social deficits in individuals with ASD.

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