Title page for ETD etd-05172011-192311


Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Kreiser, Nicole Lyn
Author's Email Address nlk010@vt.edu
URN etd-05172011-192311
Title The Development of a Social Anxiety Measure for Adolescents and Adults with ASD
Degree Master of Science
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
White, Susan W. Committee Chair
Bray, Bethany C. Committee Member
Clum, George A. Jr. Committee Member
Keywords
  • ASD
  • Measurement
  • Social Anxiety
  • Comorbidity
Date of Defense 2011-05-03
Availability restricted
Abstract
Despite numerous studies documenting the high prevalence of social anxiety in children and adolescents with High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder (HFASD), there has been little empirical investigation into methods for the assessment of social anxiety in this population. The purpose of this study was to create an empirically derived screening instrument to measure subjective feelings of social anxiety in adolescents and adults with HFASD. Based on a thorough review of the literature in this area, items from all measures (k = 15) used to assess social anxiety in adolescents and adults with HFASD were compiled. After collapsing similar items into one composite item, a pool of 86 items were included in an electronic survey that was sent to experts (n = 99) in the field of anxiety disorders in ASD. Experts ranked the degree to which each item was indicative of social anxiety in HFASD. Based on expert responses, 30 items were selected as the most representative for assessing social anxiety in the target population. In the second phase of the study, experts were asked to rate the final pool of items comprised of the 30 derived from phase I and 10 additional items developed from expert feedback and coding of taped diagnostic interviews with adolescents with HFASD and social anxiety. A final screening measure was derived comprised of 31 items. Future directions and use of the newly formed measure are discussed.
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