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Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 46, Issue 2, pp 436–449 | Cite as

Perceived Social Competence and Loneliness Among Young Children with ASD: Child, Parent and Teacher Reports

  • Sasha M. Zeedyk
  • Shana R. Cohen
  • Abbey Eisenhower
  • Jan Blacher
Original Paper

Abstract

Perceived loneliness and social competence were assessed for 127 children with ASD without comorbid ID, 4–7 years old, through child self-report. Using an abbreviated version of the Loneliness and Social Dissatisfaction Questionnaire (LSDQ; Cassidy and Asher in Child Dev 63:250–365, 1992), the majority of children reported friendships, yet a considerable proportion also reported social difficulties. Factor analysis of the abbreviated LSDQ identified three factors, which were significantly associated with parent- and teacher-reported variables. Regression analyses revealed parent-reported social skills deficits and teacher-reported conflict in the student–teacher relationship to be associated with child-reported loneliness. Implications for practice are discussed.

Keywords

Loneliness Social competence Child self-report Multi-informant Student–teacher relationships 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This paper was based on a longitudinal study funded by the Institute of Education Sciences (R324A110086; J. Blacher, P.I.). Support was also provided by the SEARCH Family Autism Resource Center in the Graduate School of Education, UC Riverside. We are indebted to our colleagues and students and to the children, parents, and teachers who participated in this research.

Author Contributions

SZ developed the idea for this study, which was based on an ongoing longitudinal project [IES, R324A110086, Jan Blacher, PI], participated in its implementation, including data collection, analysis, and all aspects of manuscript preparation; SC participated in the data collection and interpretation; AE, as co-PI, reviewed the manuscript; JB conceived of the study and design, directed study implementation, and participated in interpreting the data and drafting the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sasha M. Zeedyk
    • 1
  • Shana R. Cohen
    • 2
  • Abbey Eisenhower
    • 3
  • Jan Blacher
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry, Child and Adolescent Services Research CenterUniversity of California, San DiegoSan DiegoUSA
  2. 2.Department of Education StudiesUniversity of California, San DiegoSan DiegoUSA
  3. 3.University of Massachusetts, BostonBostonUSA
  4. 4.University of California, RiversideRiversideUSA

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