““It’s true that many individuals with high-functioning autism have very high levels of intelligence and savant-like abilities,” says Harry Voulgarakis, a psychologist and director of the Shoreline Center for Social Learning in Connecticut. “But it’s important to remember that this is a small percentage of individuals on the spectrum…in fact, about 40 percent of people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder [ASD] have an intellectual disability, or a lower range IQ. So while the media representations of ASD are not necessarily inaccurate, they are limited in the many aspects of ASD that they are portraying.”
The Clinical Psychology faculty colleagues have teamed up to study pregnant women, immigrant families, preterm infants, and more.
Some students will go on to publish their research. The hope is always that any new findings will be used by clinical psychologists in their therapeutic work with patients.
“Research,” says Dr. Field, “is the bottom line for solving problems and providing solutions for people, and for the world.”
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by pervasive deficits in social communication and patterns of restricted, repetitive, stereotyped behaviors and interests (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). Beyond the main diagnostic criteria, however, there is considerable heterogeneity in the symptom presentations that is demonstrated by people with ASD, including severity, language, cognitive skills, and related deficits (Evans et al, 2018).
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail, and we have all heard it before. One simple step to reducing challenging behaviors when going out into the community setting is to gather a few items you know your child enjoys.
There are a wide number of strategies that can be used to address problem behavior in community settings. Unfortunately, there is no overnight fix. Remember that whatever strategy you choose to use, stay consistent, reinforce the contingencies you have set, and above all remember that every once in a while, someone is going to stare and glare.