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PEERS Autism Intervention is an Effective Approach to Social Skills Development in Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects social communication and interaction, as well as the presence of repetitive behaviors and interests. While there is no cure for ASD, evidence-based interventions can help individuals with ASD improve their social skills, academic performance, and quality of life. One such intervention is the Program for the Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills (PEERS) for Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder. In this blog post, we will discuss what the PEERS intervention is, why it is effective, and its benefits for individuals with ASD.
What is the PEERS Intervention?
The PEERS intervention is a 14-week, parent-assisted social skills program designed for adolescents with ASD. Developed by Dr. Elizabeth Laugeson and her colleagues at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), the PEERS program focuses on improving social skills through a structured curriculum that includes didactic instruction, role-playing, and real-life practice. The program also involves parents and caregivers as active participants in the treatment, providing them with strategies to support their child's social development.
Why is the PEERS Intervention Effective?
The PEERS intervention is effective because it is evidence-based and tailored to the unique social challenges that individuals with ASD face. Here are some of the reasons why the PEERS intervention is effective:
• Evidence-Based: The PEERS intervention is based on decades of research on social skills training for individuals with ASD. The program has been rigorously tested in randomized controlled trials and has consistently demonstrated significant improvements in social skills, including communication, assertiveness, and conflict resolution.
• Structured Curriculum: The PEERS curriculum is highly structured and includes didactic instruction, role-playing, and real-life practice. The program is designed to teach adolescents with ASD specific social skills that they can apply in their daily lives.
• Parent Involvement: The PEERS program involves parents and caregivers as active participants in the treatment. Parents attend weekly sessions with their child and are provided with strategies to support their child's social development. By involving parents in the treatment, the PEERS intervention helps to generalize social skills across different contexts.
• Emphasis on Friendship: The PEERS program places a strong emphasis on developing and maintaining friendships. Adolescents with ASD often struggle with forming and maintaining friendships, and the PEERS intervention provides them with the skills they need to build meaningful relationships with peers.
Benefits of the PEERS Intervention for Individuals with ASD
The PEERS intervention has numerous benefits for individuals with ASD. Here are some of the benefits:
• Improved Social Skills: The PEERS program has been shown to significantly improve social skills, including communication, assertiveness, and conflict resolution. These skills are essential for successful social interactions and relationships.
• Increased Friendship Quality: The PEERS intervention helps adolescents with ASD to develop and maintain friendships. By improving social skills and providing opportunities for socialization, the PEERS program can enhance the quality of friendships for individuals with ASD.
• Generalization of Skills: By involving parents and caregivers in the treatment, the PEERS program helps to generalize social skills across different contexts. This can improve social functioning in a variety of settings, including school, home, and community.
• Improved Quality of Life: The PEERS intervention can lead to improved quality of life for individuals with ASD by increasing social connectedness and reducing social isolation.
The PEERS intervention is an evidence-based social skills program designed for adolescents with ASD. The program is effective because it is based on decades of research, includes a structured curriculum, involves parents and caregivers, and places a strong emphasis on developing and maintaining friendships. The benefits of the PEERS intervention for individuals with ASD include improved social skills, increased friendship quality.
Enroll in PEERS now by calling our office.