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  • Social Work
Hours: 3 Contact Hours
Author(s): Lauren H. Kerstein, LCSW
Peer Reviewer(s): Tana Hope, PhD
Item#: B4178
Contents: 1 Course Book (98 pages)

Asperger's Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorders: DSM-5 Changes and Treatment, Updated 1st Edition

Price $29.95
Item # B4178
When available, the Online Course format is included with the hard copy, eBook, or audio book formats!

Expiration Date: December 31, 2018

This course is designed to help professionals recognize and work with the symptoms of Asperger's syndrome.  The DSM-5 subsumed Asperger’s syndrome into the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder; however, there are special qualities to Asperger’s syndrome that helping professionals may be called upon to identify when assisting in the acquistion of social and other skills sets.  This course is packed with information that professionals will find extremely important in the identification, assessment, and treatment of Asperger’s syndrome; many of the intervention techniques described are also useful in work with children and adults who have autism spectrum disorder. 

The course describes the unique history of the Asperger’s syndrome diagnosis and various theories about causality.  Using case scenarios, the course offers various symptom presentations across the lifespan, which highlight the importance of thorough assessment and individualized treatment interventions. Screening tools and assessment tools are described. The course details numerous treatment interventions for varying areas of difficulty that individuals experience, such as executive function, social interaction, intense and narrow interests, sensory processing, communication (nonverbal skills and pragmatic skills), mental health, theory of mind, and learning style. Interventions that are discussed include cognitive approaches, peer-mediated intervention programs, group interventions, family therapy, and sibling groups. The course describes in detail how such interventions are used to help individuals develop adaptive skills, including life skills such as personal hygiene and time management. The development of relationship and social skills is also discussed, such as social perception and social problem solving, emotional reciprocity, and knowledge of social norms. The course describes family systems issues related to the diagnosis, such as grief and emotional difficulties. Special considerations for females with Asperger’s syndrome are provided. 

This basic-level course is intended for social workers, mental health counselors, marriage and family therapists, psychologists, and nurses. However, the course will benefit other professionals who may have a client with Asperger’s syndrome, including physical and occupational therapists, speech and language pathologists, psychiatrists, pediatricians or other medical doctors, paraprofessionals, administrators, and teachers. An extensive resources section is provided at the end of the course to further participants' work with clients who have Asperger's syndrome

  • Social Workers will receive 3 (clinical) continuing education clock hours upon successfully completing this course. Accreditation

Course Objectives

  • Discuss the history and prevalence of Asperger’s syndrome.
  • Describe causal theories with respect to Asperger’s syndrome.
  • Discuss diagnostic constructs for Asperger’s syndrome.
  • Describe the evaluation and assessment of Asperger’s syndrome.
  • Explain the associated characteristics of Asperger’s syndrome.
  • Explain interventions that effectively support people with Asperger’s syndrome.

Lauren H. Kerstein, LCSW, received a master’s degree in social work from the George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, MO. She is a licensed clinical social worker in private practice in Denver, CO, where she has worked with children, adolescents, adults, and families for more than 15 years. Ms. Kerstein specializes in working with children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders. She also works with children experi­encing anxiety; depression; social difficulties; divorce; and other adjustment, developmental, and mental health issues. Ms. Kerstein is the author of My Sensory Book: Working Together to Explore Sensory Issues and the Big Feelings They Can Cause: A Workbook for Parents, Professionals, and Children. Ms. Kerstein is also the author of A Week of Shifting, Switching, and Stretching: How to Make My Thinking More Flexible. Additionally, Ms. Kerstein has contributed articles to Expert Beacon, SensorySpot, and The Autism Notebook.

Tana Hope, PhD, is assistant director of the Child and Family Therapy Clinic in the Behavioral Psychology Department of the Kennedy Krieger Institute. She is also an instructor in the Department of Psychiatry at The Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine. Dr. Hope received her PhD from Louisiana State University in 2001. She completed her pre-doctoral internship training at the Kennedy Krieger Institute and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD. Dr. Hope is a clinical psychologist with special interest in the application of empirically supported treatments including behavioral, cognitive behavioral, solution-focused, and structural family therapy treatments for children and adolescents. Her primary clinical and research interests include working with children diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome, anxiety, depression, and reactive attachment disorder; and the identification of variables influencing differential diagnosis and efficacy of treatment.

  • Courses must be completed on or before the expiration date noted in the course description above.
  • You must score 75% or higher on the final exam and complete the course evaluation to pass this course and receive a certificate of completion.
  • Through our review processes, Western Schools ensures that this course content is presented in a balanced, unbiased manner and is free from commercial influence. It is Western Schools’ policy not to accept commercial support.
  • All persons involved in the planning and development of this course have disclosed no relevant financial relationships or other conflicts of interest related to the course content.