Conversation is a complex aspect of social behavior and is especially difficult for most persons with autism. The DSM-5's main criterion for the diagnosis of autism consists of "Persistent deficits in social communication and social interaction." The DSM-5 goes on to exemplify this criteria with the "failure of normal back-and-forth conversation." But what constitutes a "normal" conversation? A behavioral analysis will suggest it involves verbal behavior, listener behavior, motivation, social behavior, multiple control, conditional discriminations, and a host of other variables. Identifying these variables is essential for the assessment and treatment of impaired or absent conversational skills. Following an analysis of conversational behavior, suggestions will be provided as to how to assess conversational behavior, including supporting social behaviors, and develop appropriate intervention programs.
August 6 – 9, 2018
The Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center
State College, Pennsylvania