Back to Journals » Adolescent Health, Medicine and Therapeutics » Volume 4

Group-based social skills interventions for adolescents with higher-functioning autism spectrum disorder: a review and looking to the future

Authors McMahon C, Lerner M, Britton N

Received 24 August 2012

Accepted for publication 5 November 2012

Published 22 January 2013 Volume 2013:4 Pages 23—38


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Camilla M McMahon,1 Matthew D Lerner,2,3 Noah Britton4

1Department of Curriculum and Instruction, Indiana University Bloomington, Bloomington, IN, USA; 2Department of Psychology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA; 3Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neuroscience, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA; 4Behavorial Sciences Department, Bunker Hill Community College, Charleston, MA, USA

Abstract: In this paper, we synthesize the current literature on group-based social skills interventions (GSSIs) for adolescents (ages 10–20 years) with higher-functioning autism spectrum disorder and identify key concepts that should be addressed in future research on GSSIs. We consider the research participants, the intervention, the assessment of the intervention, and the research methodology and results to be integral and interconnected components of the GSSI literature, and we review each of these components respectively. Participant characteristics (eg, age, IQ, sex) and intervention characteristics (eg, targeted social skills, teaching strategies, duration and intensity) vary considerably across GSSIs; future research should evaluate whether participant and intervention characteristics mediate/moderate intervention efficacy. Multiple assessments (eg, parent-report, child-report, social cognitive assessments) are used to evaluate the efficacy of GSSIs; future research should be aware of the limitations of current measurement approaches and employ more accurate, sensitive, and comprehensive measurement approaches. Results of GSSIs are largely inconclusive, with few consistent findings across studies (eg, high parent and child satisfaction with the intervention); future research should employ more rigorous methodological standards for evaluating efficacy. A better understanding of these components in the current GSSI literature and a more sophisticated and rigorous analysis of these components in future research will lend clarity to key questions regarding the efficacy of GSSIs for individuals with autism spectrum disorder.

Keywords: intervention, social skills, autism, group, review, methodology

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]


Readers of this article also read:

Emerging and future therapies for hemophilia

Carr ME, Tortella BJ

Journal of Blood Medicine 2015, 6:245-255

Published Date: 3 September 2015

Acquired hemophilia A: emerging treatment options

Janbain M, Leissinger CA, Kruse-Jarres R

Journal of Blood Medicine 2015, 6:143-150

Published Date: 8 May 2015

A new recombinant factor VIII: from genetics to clinical use

Santagostino E

Drug Design, Development and Therapy 2014, 8:2507-2515

Published Date: 12 December 2014

Patient preference and ease of use for different coagulation factor VIII reconstitution device scenarios: a cross-sectional survey in five European countries

Cimino E, Linari S, Malerba M, Halimeh S, Biondo F, Westfeld M

Patient Preference and Adherence 2014, 8:1713-1720

Published Date: 12 December 2014

Second case report of successful electroconvulsive therapy for a patient with schizophrenia and severe hemophilia A

Saito N, Shioda K, Nisijima K, Kobayashi T, Kato S

Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment 2014, 10:865-867

Published Date: 16 May 2014

Green synthesis of water-soluble nontoxic polymeric nanocomposites containing silver nanoparticles

Prozorova GF, Pozdnyakov AS, Kuznetsova NP, Korzhova SA, Emel’yanov AI, Ermakova TG, Fadeeva TV, Sosedova LM

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2014, 9:1883-1889

Published Date: 16 April 2014

Cross-linked acrylic hydrogel for the controlled delivery of hydrophobic drugs in cancer therapy

Deepa G, Thulasidasan AK, Anto RJ, Pillai JJ, Kumar GS

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:4077-4088

Published Date: 27 July 2012

Crystallization after intravitreal ganciclovir injection

Pitipol Choopong, Nattaporn Tesavibul, Nattawut Rodanant

Clinical Ophthalmology 2010, 4:709-711

Published Date: 14 July 2010