Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy - School Psychology


Human Services

First Advisor

Dr. Jaime Flowers

Second Advisor

Dr. Daniel McCleary

Third Advisor

Dr. Elaine Turner

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Sarah Savoy


Social skills are a person’s ability to adapt to the environment appropriately utilizing verbal and nonverbal communication (Matson et al., 2007). In accordance with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders – fifth edition (DSM-5), individuals diagnosed with Autism demonstrate social skills deficits (APA, 2013). Such deficits may impact an individual negatively in developing and maintaining relationships, as well as occupational skills. However, assessments for adults are few and far between, as assessment has primarily focused on children. Therefore, the purpose of this dissertation was to create and pilot a measure of adult social skills, with the intention of utilizing the measure for autistic adults in research and clinical practice. It was hypothesized that the ASSRS would obtain a reliability above or beyond .80 after review, conducted by an expert panel, for item relevancy and elimination of items loading less than .32. It was also hypothesized that the ASSRS would reveal 10 factors, which would be broken by the categories the ASSRS intended to measure. Lastly, it was hypothesized that the ASSRS would demonstrate strong convergent validity against the MSCS as the scales are both measuring similar constructs. The ASSRS preliminary norms was conducted on 103 Stephen F. Austin State University psychology undergraduates. Results revealed that the ASSRS had a strong internal reliability (α = .872). After elimination of poorly loaded items, the ASSRS had revealed a 12-factor structure. The ASSRS and MCSC had a small significant correlation (r = 0.338, p < .001), demonstrating convergent validity, however, the ASSRS failed to demonstrate divergent validity when correlated with the AQ (r = 0.122, p = .218). It was hypothesized that the score was impacted by a low sample size as the goodness of fit models are sensitive to sample size. More research is needed to validate the ASSRS. Future research should aim to utilize the ASSRS on its intended population, with different cultures, and clinical populations.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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