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A Meta-Analysis Of School-Based Social Skills Interventions For Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders

Scott Bellini, Jessica K. Peters, Lauren Benner, Andrea Hopf

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Social skills deficits are a central feature of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). This meta-analysis of 55 single-subject design studies examined the effectiveness of school-based social skills interventions for children and adolescents with ASD. Intervention, maintenance, and generalization effects were measured by computing the percentage of non-overlapping data points. The results suggest that social skills interventions have been minimally effective for children with ASD. Specific participant, setting, and procedural features that lead to the most effective intervention outcomes are highlighted, and implications for school personnel are discussed. Finally, the results are compared to the outcomes of similar meta-analyses involving social skills interventions with other populations of children.