The Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule II (ADOS-II)

The ADOS-2 is a semi-structured assessment of communication, social interaction, and play (or imaginative use of materials) for individuals suspected of having an Autism Spectrum Disorder.  The ADOS-2 is appropriate for children and adults of differing developmental and language levels, ranging from nonverbal to verbally-fluent.

The ADOS-2 consists of standardized activities that allow the examiner to observe the occurrence or non-occurrence of behaviors that have been identified as important to the diagnosis of autism across varying developmental levels and chronological ages.  The examiner selects the module that is most appropriate for a particular child or adult on the basis of his/her language level and chronological age. Structured activities and material, as well as less structured interactions, provide standardized contexts in which social, communication and other behavior relevant to Autism Spectrum disorders are observed. Within each module, the participant’s response to each activity is recorded and overall ratings are made at the end of the schedule.  The ADOS-2 is not intended as a sole instrument in making a diagnosis, but is to be used in conjunction with other assessments and diagnostic information.

Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales (Vineland-II)

The Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Vineland-II) measures the personal and social skills on individuals from birth through adulthood. The Vineland-II assesses adaptive behavior in five domains: Communication, Daily Living Skills, Socialization, Motor Skills and Maladaptive Behavior.

Adaptive behavior refers to an individual’s typical performance of the day-to-day activities required for personal and social sufficiency; these scales assess what a person actually does, rather than what he or she is able to do.

In order to determine the level of an individual’s adaptive behavior, someone who is familiar with that individual, such as a parent or caregiver, is asked to describe his activities. Those activities are then compared to those of other people the same age to determine which areas is average, above average, or in need of special attention.

Learning about an individual’s adaptive behavior helps us to gain a total picture of that individual. When adaptive behavior information is combined with information about an individual’s intelligence, school achievement, and physical health plans can be made to address special needs that person may have at home, school, or in the community.