What is Autism (ASD)?
Autism Spectrum Disorder is a developmental disability significantly affecting verbal and nonverbal social communication and social interaction, generally evidenced by the age of three. Other characteristics often associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder are engagement in repetitive activities and stereotyped movements, resistance to environmental changes or changes in daily routines, and unusual responses to sensory experiences.
In some cases, individuals may not demonstrate concerns that might suggest the presence of an ASD early in their development (e.g. prior to age 3). In some cases, children appear to develop typically, or even advanced for their age. At some point in their development, their skills (particularly in social interactions) no longer match with their peers and become increasingly disparate.
Autism (ASD) or Asperger's?
Prior to 2015, Asperger's Syndrome was considered part of the Autism Spectrum, but it was its own diagnosis. As of 2015, Asperger's Syndrome falls under ASD and is not a separate diagnosis. An individual who previously would have a diagnosis of Asperger's Syndrome (or High Functioning Autism) will likely have a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder - Level 1 (requiring support, but they do not require substantial support).
Does my child have Autism (ASD)? Do I have Autism (ASD)?
If you believe your child, a student in your school, or you yourself may have an Autism Spectrum Disorder, I can complete a comprehensive evaluation to help make that determination! Georginia is a Certified Autism Specialist, which demonstrates the additional coursework and training completed. She has extensive background working as an ABA therapist with students across the spectrum, as well as conducted evaluations to determine if Autism is present.
Autism (ASD) Evaluations
An evaluation includes a detailed developmental and medical history and interview with parents, direct assessment with you or your child including an Autism specific assessment as well as cognitive, academic, and language assessments, completion of rating scales from parents or other adults familiar with the individual, caregivers, and/or teachers, and review of any available records. Georginia is not a Speech and Language Pathologist (SLP) and may refer you to seek an additional evaluation with an SLP to better understand your child's communication strengths and needs. Georginia is not an M.D., Ph.D., or Psy.D. but is trained and qualified to assess you or your child.