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Social Skills Development

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shawn scriffiano

on 17 August 2014

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Transcript of Social Skills Development

1. Limited understanding of non-verbal communication (e.g. body language, facial expressions, tone of voice) (Frankel, 2011, p. 19)

2. Limited use of "cover stories" (Frankel, 2011, p. 20).
Social Skills Deficits in ASD
Social Initiation

1. Gaining someones attention (e.g. making eye contact, tapping n the shoulder, walking up in front of someone)

2. Greetings (e.g. "hello", "good morning", "how are you?"

3. Acknowledging someone's presence

4. Could involve peer-initiation or initiation by an adult

Social Reciprocity
Social reciprocity
is the back-and-forth flow of social interaction" (Autism Society of Baltimore, 2014).
Social Communication

1. Non-verbal: Facial expressions (e.g. smiling, frowning)

2. Non-verbal: Touch (e.g. a firm handshake)

3. Verbal: Face to face conversation

4. Verbal: Phone conversations
Shawn Scriffiano
Social Skills Development
3. Restricted interests (Frankel, 2011, p. 20)

4. Limited understanding of vague or non-literal language (Frankel, 2011, p. 22)

5. Individuals may demonstrate inappropriate social behaviors that isolate them from peers (e.g. self-stimulatory behavior)

6. Limited join attention (Hall, 2013, p. 193)

7. Cognitive Rigidity (Frankel, 2011, p. 20)
Social Cognition
Social Development Theory
Persistent deficits in social communication and social interaction are aspects of one of the defining characteristics for the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder
(American Psychiatric Association, 2012).

Autism Society of Baltimore. Social Reciprocity, 2014. http://www.baltimoreautismsociety.org/glossary/term/social-reciprocity/.

Bellini, S. (2011). Social Challenges of Children and Youths with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Autism Spectrum Disorders: Foundations,
Characteristics, and Effective Strategies. University of Indiana: Pears Education, (201-221).

Carter. E.W., Cushing, L.S., Clark, N.M., & Kennedy, C.H., (2005). Effects of Peer Support Interventions on Students' Access to the General
Curriculum and Social Interactions.
Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities
, 30(1), 15-25.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Data and Statistics, 2014. http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/data.html.

Charlop, M.H., Dennis, B., Carpenter, M.H., & Greenberg, A.L. (2010). Teaching socially expressive behaviors to children with autism
through video modeling. Education & Treatment of Children, 33(3), 371-393, 23

Cherry, Kendra (2014). Social Cognition. Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/socialpsychology/g/social-cognition.htm.

D'Zurilla, T.J., Nezu, A.M. (1982). Social problem solving in adults. In P.C. Kendall, (ed.). Advances in cognitive-behavioral research and therapy
(Vol. 2, pp. 201-274). New York: Academic Press.

D'Zurilla, T.J., Nezu, A.M., & Maydeu-Olivares. Social Problem Solving: Theory, Research, and Training (Ed.). Washigton D.C.: American
Psychological Association (11-27).

Ganz, J.B., Kayor, M., Bourgeois, B., & Hadden, K. (2008). The Impact of Social Scripts and Visual Cues on Verbal Communication in Three
Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disorders
, 23 (2), 79-94. DOI: 10.1177/1088357607311447.

Gray C. A., & Garand J. D. (1993). Social stories: Improving responses of students with autism with accurate social information.
Focus on
Autistic Behavior
, 8(1), 1-10.

Hall, Laura J. (2013). Building Social Skills and Social Relationships. (2nd ed.). Autism Spectrum Disorder: From Theory to Practice (192-220).
Pearson Education.

Humphries, A. (2003). Effectiveness of PRT as a behavioral intervention for young children with ASD. Bridges Practice-based Research
Syntheses, 2(4), 1–10.

1. Showing interest in others
2. Exchanging smiles
3. Exchanging polite introductions (e.g. "My name is..." from both parties)
"...many researchers have suggested that the social
impairment of children with autism may be their most important deficit" (Koegel, Koegel, Hurley, & Frea, 1992; Roeyers, 1995).
About 1 in 68 individuals have an Autism Spectrum Disorder (Center for Disease Control, 2014).
Who created it?:
Lev Vygotsky (1934)

What is it?:
Theory on how a child learns and develops

What are the key points?:
"Social learning tends to precede development" (McLeod, 2007)
Emphasis placed on culture and social factors shaping cognitive development
Emphasis placed on role of language
Infants born with basic abilities for intellectual development
The first few years of life are critical
Zone of Proximal Development
What a child can learn independently vs. what a child can learn with assistance from a knowledgeable educator
Zone of Proximal Development
Lev Vykotsky
Difficulties with Social Skills
Socially expressive behaviors enable children to share in a joined experience in both verbal and nonverbal ways
(Charlop, Dennis, Carpenter, Greenbeg 2010).

Research indicates a functional relation between social interaction and play or social interaction
(McConnel, 2002).

Results from various studies indicate that peer training is a viable strategy for increasing interactions between typical peers and students with ASD
(Owen-DeSchryver, Carr, Cale, Blakeley-Smith, 2008).

Researchers have successfully taught young children with ASD to initiate bids for attention from adults
(Hall, 2013, p. 198)

Without interventions, "children with autism may fail to develop a history in which social interaction is considered motivating or reinforcing over time, thus limiting their ability to develop close friendships and relationships in later years"
(Koegel and Lazebnik 2009).


1. Awareness that another individual's body posture/facial expression could represent anger, discomfort, confidence, etc.
After making a rude comment, the other person may frown or tense his body... this could represent anger. Appropriate awareness couple prevent a fight.

2. Recognition of polite language to end a conversation in a less abrupt manner than simply walking away
It would be rude to walk away while someone else is talking just because you became disinterested in the topic.

Social Communication
refers to language used in social situations
Social Cognition
refers to "how we process, store, and apply information about other people and social situations"
(Cherry, 2014). It is the manner in which an individual processes social information (Baron-Cohen, 1989; Bellini, 2011).
Social Skills Acquisition Tools and Methods
1. Environmental Modifications

2. Social Scripting

3. Video Modeling

4. Social Stories

5. Social Skills Training (SST)

6. Social Problem Solving

Social Scripting
Peer-Mediated Strategies
...students in peer-mediated programs demonstrate improvements in self-concept, social skills, understanding of human difference and tolerance of differences, and development of social relationships
(Kamps, Kravits, Stolz, & Swaggert, 1998).
Janzen, J. E. (2003). Understanding the nature of autism: A guide to the autism spectrum disorders (2nd ed.). San Antonio, TX: Therapy
Skill Builders.

Kamps, D. M., Kravitz, T., Gonzalez-Lopez, A., Kemmerer, K., Potucek, J., & Harrell, L. G. (1998). What do peers think? Social validity of
peer-mediated programs. Education and Treatment of Children, 21, 107–134.

Koegel, L. K., Koegel, R. L., Hurley, C., & Frea, W. D. (1992). Improving social skills and disruptive behavior in children with autism
through self-management. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 25, 341–353.

Koegel, L. K., & LaZebnik, C. (2009). Growing up on the spectrum: A guide to life, love, and learning for teens and young adults with
autism and Asperger’s. New York: Viking Penguin.

Koegel, R.L, Vernon, T.W., Koegel, L.K. (2009). Improving Social Initiations in Young Children with Autism Using Reinforcers with
Embedded Social Interactions. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 39(9), 1240-1251. doi: http:/ dx.doi.org/10.1007%2Fs10803-009-0732-5.

McConnell, S.R. (2002). Interventions to facilitate social interaction for young children with autism: Review of available research and
recommendations for educational intervention and future research. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 32, 351-372.

McLeod, Saul. (2007). In Simply Pyshcology. Lev Vygotsky. Retrieved from http://www.simplypsychology.org/vygotsky.html.

Nangle, D.W., Hansen, D.J., Erdley, C.A., & Norton, P.J. (Eds.). (2010). Social Skills Interventions. In A. Smith, J.A. Jordan, M.F. Flood, & D.J.
Hansen (Eds.), Practitioner’s guide to empirically based measures of social skills (99-117). New York: Springer.

Nikopoulous, C.K., & Keenan, M. (2004). Effects of Video Modeling on Social Initiations by Children with Autism. Journal of Applied Behavior
Analysis. 37(1), 93-96

Ogilvie, C.R. (2011). Step-by-Step: Social Skills Instruction for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders Using Video Models and Peer
Teaching Exceptional Children
, 43(6), 20-26.

Owen-DeSchryver, J.S., Carr, E.G., Cale, S.I., Blakely-Smith, A. (2008). Promoting Social Interactions Between Students with Autism
Spectrum Disorders and Their Peers in Inclusive School Settings.
Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities
, 23(1), 15-28.

Vygotsky, L. S. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Peer Mentoring
Peer Tutoring
Peer Modeling (in vivo or in video)
Peer mentoring
is defined as one or more peers without disabilities providing academic and social supports to a student with disabilities (Carter, Cushing, Clark, and Kennedy, 2005).
Peer mentoring has been identified as one successful peer-mediated intervention for improving social skills among learners with Autism Spectrum Disorder
(Ogilvie, 2011).
Peer Mentoring
Social Skills Training (SST)
Social skills training (SST)
, which can be delivered in either group or individual formats, is a therapeutic intervention based on the application of behavioral and social learning theory and techniques (Nangle, Hanson, Erdley, Norton, 2010)
Types of Peer Mentoring:
Social Skills training
involves breaking down individual social skills into smaller component parts (Nangle et al., 2010).
Typical skills targeted during SST:

Social problem-solving (Nangle et al., 2010)
Environmental modifications
involve modifications to the physical and social environment that promote social interactions between children with ASD and their peers (McConnell, 2002).
Changes to an activity schedule (McConnell, 2002)
Creating groups based on needs
Pairing procedures
Contriving situations to require language (e.g. put something reinforcing out of reach so learners must ask for assistance)
Environmental Modifications
Increases possibility for incidental teaching!
Video Modeling
A video model depicts an instructor brushing his teeth. A learner watches the video and imitates the instructor to complete the skill.
Video modeling
involves demonstration of desired behaviors through active video representation of the behavior (Bellini, 2011).

Video self-modeling (VSM) is a specific application of video modeling wherein the individual learns by watching her own behavior (Bellini, 2011).
Research suggests that video modeling interventions increase social initiations, pretend play, and generalization
(Nikopoulos, 2004).
Social Stories
social story
is a short simple story written from the perspective of the student that provides instruction on positive, appropriate social behaviors (Gray & Garand, 1993)
Social Scripting
Video Modeling
Social Problem Solving
Many children with Autism Spectrum Disorders may respond but fail to initiate interactions (Janzen, 2003).
An increase in interaction with peers and adults occurs when children with ASD are taught social scripts through modeling,
prompting, and reinforcement (Ganz, Kaylor, Bourgeois, Hadden, 2008).
Social Scripts
are pre-taught written scripts that are used to increase language and social interactions. Scripts are typically faded systematically.

involves the presentation of a structured “script” to the learner that provides an explicit description regarding what the child will say or do during a social interaction (Mayo & Waldo, 1994; Bellini, 2011).
Example of script fading:
Let's play Jenga
Let's play _______
Let's __________
Social Problem Solving
Social Problem Solving
is the process of problem solving as it occurs in the natural environment (D'Zurilla & Nezu, 1982).
"Social problem solving is conceived as a conscious, rational, effortful, and purposeful activity" (D'Zurilla, Nezu, Maydeu-Olivares, Social Problem Solving).
3 Components:
self directed cognitive behavioral process by which an individual...or group attempts to identify...effective solutions for specific problems..." (D'Zurilla et. al).
any life situation or task that demands a response but cannot be completed due to an obstacle (D'Zurilla et. al).
"situation-specific coping response" (D'Zurill, et. al)
being ignored by a peer
talk louder, gain attention, make eye contact; try interaction again
Uses written scripts

Increases language

Can involve peer interaction

Uses a video

Increases language and appropriate non-verbal cues

Can involve peer interaction

Cognitive-behavioral process

Increases appropriate social interactions

Can involve peer interaction

Involves incidental teaching strategies

Pivotal Response Training
Pivotal response training (PRT)
(Koegel & Koegel, 2006) is an intervention program based on the principles of applied behavioral analysis that is utilized in natural environments and capitalizes on the availability of naturally occurring reinforcers (Bellini, 2011).

PRT targets four pivotal areas: responsivity to multiple cues, initiation, motivation, and self-management (Bellini, 2011).
Research shows that PRT is an effective strategy for addressing the behavior, communication, and social functioning of
children with ASD
(Humprhies, 2003).
7. Pivotal Response Training

8. Peer-mediated strategies
(E.g. Peer Mentoring)
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