Title page for ETD etd-05202011-221600

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Graham, Cindy Terlonge
URN etd-05202011-221600
Title Differences Across Racial Groups in Caregiver Ratings of Symptoms in Children Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Matson, Johnny Committee Chair
Copeland, Amy Committee Member
Gouvier, Wm. Drew Committee Member
Hicks, Jason Committee Member
Tinkler, Justine E. Dean's Representative
  • race
  • diagnosis
  • autism spectrum disorder
  • Baby Infant Screen for Children with aUtIsm Traits
Date of Defense 2010-10-18
Availability unrestricted
A great deal of attention from local, federal, and international communities has been focused on autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). As the prevalence of these disorders rise, researchers continue to investigate various unanswered questions. The goal of this study was to examine the differences across racial/ethnic groups in caregiver ratings of symptoms of children diagnosed with ASDs. Results from such research will help determine whether cultural background can influence the recognition of behaviors indicative of an ASD. Culturally-sensitive clinical practice stemming from the significant findings of this research project can help to reduce the age at which minority children are diagnosed. This study compared two groups each: 1) African American and 2) Caucasian. The study focused on caregiver ratings of infants and toddlers diagnosed with ASDs. The author hypothesized that significant differences will be found in the factor structure of the Baby and Infant Screen for Children with aUtIsm Traits (BISCUIT) Parts 1 and 3. Results suggested that Caucasians and African Americans differed in the underlying factor structure of the measures. Caucasians had a two-factor solution while African Americans had a four-factor solution for the BISCUIT Part 1. For the BISCUIT Part 3, the Caucasian group maintained the three-factor solution of the original measure while African Americans yielded a two-factor solution. Implications, limitations, and future directions for this study were also discussed.
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