Parental perception of the importance of friendship and other outcome priorities in children with autism spectrum disorder

Neysa Petrina*, Mark Carter, Jennifer Stephenson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Parental perceptions of the importance of friendship development in comparison to other outcome priorities are examined in this research. Parents of children with high functioning autism between the age of 5–10 years (N = 74) were asked to rate and rank the importance of the following six outcome priorities: friendship, social skills, physical and motor development, intellectual and academic skills, creativity, and emotional capacity. It was predicted that friendship would be highly prioritised by parents, considering the friendship difficulties often experienced by children with autism. Parents reported friendship to be third most highly rated outcome following social skills and emotional skills, although all three were closely rated. When parents were asked to force-rank priorities, friendship was ranked considerably lower than social and emotional development. Level of autistic symptomatology of the child did not seem to influence parent rating or ranking of friendship importance to any great extent. The implications of these findings for future educational service delivery are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-74
Number of pages14
JournalEuropean Journal of Special Needs Education
Volume30
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2015

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