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Best Practice When Assessing Social Communication with High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders

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In-Person / Webinar

Details

Date: Friday December 7, 2018 Time: 10:00 AM PST | 01:00 PM EST

Overview:

This presentation will offer participants a variety of tools to help evaluate the social-
pragmatic communicative features of High Functioning Autism Spectrum to acquire more relevant
information with which to develop intervention strategies.

Why should you Attend: It is well known that individuals with High Functioning Autism Spectrum
have deficits in social-communication skills. Engaging in one-sided conversational topics that
hold little interest to others, a tendency towards hyper-literalism, an inability to
understand idiomatic and abstract language are often present. Vocal tone may be flat and
monotonous or may come across as condescending or outright oppositional. Add to this problem,
the individual may have poor facial expressions which further serve to negatively impact how
others perceive them socially.

Reading nonverbal language is often a weak skill for individuals with High Functioning Autism
Spectrum. What many people fail to realize is how significant a role this skill plays in
social situations. When was the last time you told someone you didn't want to listen to their
conversation anymore? Did you ever state to someone you find his/her topic interesting? Likely
you did not. Instead people use subtle body movements and facial expressions to signal
approval and disapproval. We "read"these messages and alter our social interaction
accordingly.

But what happens if you fail to attend to these messages. People will continue to use these
techniques without success and eventually become overwhelmed and frustrated. That's when
problems really happen because they likely will express their extreme displease to the
individual and/or avoid them at all costs.

This behavior is seen by the offender as "out of the blue"and completely unwarranted. Is it
any wonder why anxiety is a major concern? Eventually the individual may view those around him
with extreme suspicion and become paranoid. After all, he thinks he's communicating in the
same manner as everyone else. That's why when it comes to social skills, it doesn't matter
what he thinks about himself, it's what others think of him that is more important. In simple
terms, if people don't like him, they will avoid him.

Diagnosticians are frequently called upon to address these issues both in terms of diagnostics
and goal development. However, few are adequately prepared to handle the unique idiosyncrasies
seen in this population. As a result, they may use standardized tools that are not designed to
assess the type of deficits seen in this population.

Diagnosticians have a responsibility to choose tests that are valid for the purpose in which
they are being used. Unfortunately, in the case of High Functioning Autism Spectrum, current
standardized tests for communication are not sensitive enough to provide the diagnostician
with appropriate information.

They assess the individual's cognitive social skills, not the functional social skills. Many
individuals know how to pass these tests. Inadequate and unobtainable social-pragmatic goals
are then developed based on these findings. Ultimately this negatively impacts effective
service delivery. We presume passing the test implies they know how to implement the skills.
This presumption is often faulty.

Areas Covered in the Session:

How to Recognize and Describe Social-Pragmatic Deficits in High Functioning Autism
Limitations of Standardized Tools when Assessing Social-Pragmatic Communication
Factors to Consider when Choosing Diagnostic Instruments
How to Extrapolate Meaningful Data From Social-Pragmatic Communication
How to write Meaningful Operant Goals for Social-Pragmatic Communication

Who Will Benefit:
Anyone who is charged with Diagnosing and Treating Individuals with High-Functioning Autism

Speaker Profile
Timothy P. Kowalski, M.A.,C.C.C. is a licensed speech-language pathologist specializing in
social-pragmatic communication deficits and an internationally known expert on Asperger
Syndrome. His Orlando practice has seen clients from Europe, South America and throughout the
USA. He regularly consults to schools on best practices for students identified or suspected
of having Asperger syndrome and provides school-wide district in-services.


Price - $139

Contact Info:
Netzealous LLC - MentorHealth
Phone No: 1-800-385-1607
Fax: 302-288-6884
Email: [email protected]
Website: http://www.mentorhealth.com/
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Schedules

No. of Days: 1
Total Hours: 1
No. of Participants: 50
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