The given project provides an opportunity to generate additional knowledge demanded to succeed in the selected field. My area of specialization is applied behavior analysis (ABA), which means that I am interested in the investigation of various behavior disorders and problems that precondition the alteration of people’s reactions and responses. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) belongs to the sphere of my interests as it presupposes various changes in people’s mental health that also trigger the emergence of different reactions.
My career goals include working with such people and a better understanding of their problems and ways to help them. The selected tests are Autism Spectrum Rating Scales (ASRS), Gilliam Autism Rating Scale, and Checklist for Autism Spectrum Disorder (CASD). The selection of these three methods is influenced by their effectiveness and the ability to evaluate factors that are essential for the problem.
The purpose for Testing, Content, and Skills, and Intended Test Takers
In general, the central purpose of testing involving the selected methodologies is to identify a specific disorder and conclude whether it is present in an individual. However, because of the complexity of diagnosing and the existence of multiple differences among individuals, there is a need for a customized approach to consider all peculiarities and acquire the most credible data. Thus, the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale follows the purpose mentioned above and is focused on the determination of specific disorders (Osborne & Reed, 2008). It tests psychological, education, and speech-language specializations and uses special scales to determine the state of a patient (Atlas, 2013). The given approach is mainly applied to people with ASD who have different problems with socialization or in everyday life.
As for the CASD, it can be described as an effective method aimed at diagnosing children with autism. The approach can be applied to all patients regardless of their age, gender, intellectual capabilities, or Autism severity (Atlas, 2012). CASD offers a semi-structured interview to be conducted with selected individuals and reveals problems with social interactions, preservation, communicative skills development, or mood (Atlas, 2012). The method is considered an effective way to work with this cohort of clients.
ASRS is another test that is used regarding the selected problem. It was introduced to assess behaviors and symptoms associated with ASD in children and adolescents aged from 2 to 18 (Goldstein & Naglieri, n.d.). The primary goal of the method is to guide a specialist’s diagnostic decisions and create a treatment plan needed to improve the state of a patient. The scale is also considered an effective tool to determine this group’s needs.
Appropriateness of Test Content, Skills Tests, and Content Coverage
The selected tests have specific appropriates that come from the peculiarities of patients who are investigated, their characteristics, and the final purpose of the assessment. Thus, the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale presupposes that multiple people can give a test regardless of setting and the environment (Atlas, 2013). The use of the proposed scale helps to acquire detailed information about patients and their states. The age frame allows the participation of individuals from 2 to 22 years as they can be diagnosed and provide accurate answers (Lecavalier, 2005). The tested content and skills show the state of a client and his/her capabilities at the moment.
CASD also has some specific appropriates coming from its nature. It is designed for children aged from 1 to 16 (Atlas, 2012). The procedure can be conducted by clinicians, parents, or teachers, and the average time frame is about 15 minutes (Mayes, n.d.). The given peculiarities are preconditioned by the existence of clear instructions and checklists that are distributed among the testees and ensure that the data will be collected in fast and effective ways. The IQ of investigated patients and the severity of their symptoms are also not significant as the designed checklists can be applied to broad groups of individuals.
Finally, ASRS is designed to measure behaviors that can be related to the appearance and development of ASD. Children belonging to the age group from 2 to 18 years can be assessed by using this scale (Goldstein & Naglieri, n.d.). Parents, teachers, or childcare providers can perform the measurement by using the offered scale and reporting data acquired during the investigation.
Materials Provided by Test Developers
ASRS can be considered the test supported by clear and accurate information that is needed to conduct it among the selected category. There are specific questions and rating scales that can help a tester to evaluate the behavior and overall state of the patient and conclude about the severity of symptoms and whether ASD can be diagnosed. There is also a detailed explanation of how to apply the method and what results should be given specific attention (Goldstein & Naglieri, n.d.). For this reason, ASRS can be recommended for broad categories of users.
CASD is designed to be used by various people, which means that there are also special supplements and accompanying data that can help to understand the peculiarities of the approach. The developers offer their own scale that can be applied to different settings and used among various populations (Atlas, 2012). It covers all common symptoms of ASD and shows the high accuracy of findings (Mayes, n.d.). In such a way, CASD can be taken as another test supported by clear information offered by designers.
Finally, the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale is designed to diagnose people with Autism in research and clinical settings (“Gilliam Autism Rating Scale–Third edition,” n.d.). For this reason, it is characterized by the increased complexity if compare with the previous two approaches and the need for additional information. Designers offer narrowed and special scales that can be employed by specialists to conclude about the state of a child (Atlas, 2013). However, the provided materials might not be sufficient for testers who do not possess a solid background knowledge about ASD and its peculiarities.
Test-User Knowledge, Skills, and Training
The methods chosen for the discussion have different requirements for test users’ knowledge, skills, and training. Thus, ASRS does not meet demand and specific information about critical peculiarities of ASD or mechanisms of its appearance and development. Designers of the test emphasize the fact that level A is enough to conduct the research (Simek & Wahlberg, 2011). There are special scales and guidelines that can help teachers, parents, or caregivers to interpret the results of the test and conclude about the existence of a specific problem.
CASD has similar demands for testing users and their skills. The existence of checklists and guidelines simplifies the task and guarantees that it can be applied in different settings and by a wide variety of investigators, including teachers or caregivers (Mayes, n.d.). Designers state that level A will be enough as there is no need for an in-depth understanding of special mechanisms or data regarding the peculiarities of ASD (Mayes, n.d.). The simplicity of this tool stipulates its wide use in various spheres and by many testers (Mayes et al., 2019).
Finally, among the selected methodologies, the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale can be taken as the most complex one. Because of its employment mainly in clinical or research settings, it demands level C knowledge for the correct application by test-users (Lecavalier, 2005). They should possess solid knowledge about ASD, how it works in children, and what changes can be triggered under the impact of the given disease. Additionally, investigators should correlate the acquired knowledge with the relevant research findings to conclude about the peculiarities of the investigated patients.
Comparisons and Contrasts of the Three Tests
In such a way, the selected three tests, ASRS, CASD, and Gilliam Autism Rating Scale, are used by testers to diagnose ASD among children and conclude about their current states. All discussed methods use specific scales to collect information and process it to acquire the desired conclusion. However, ASRS seems the most desirable option for future projects. First, it is simple and can be applied in various settings by teachers, parents, and caregivers (Randall et al., 2018).
Second, it does not demand specific background knowledge. Finally, it ensures a high level of accuracy and provides investigators with information that can be used to assess children ranged from 2 to 18 years and provide appropriate interventions. Designers offer materials and guidelines that can help test-users to organize the process and collect the needed data.
In such a way, the comparison of the three selected approaches shows that they are useful in diagnosing ASD among a special cohort of clients. However, ASRS is taken for the following projects as a method that can ensure the high accuracy and credibility of data.
Atlas, J. (2012). Review of the Checklist for Autism Spectrum Disorder. Web.
Atlas, J. (2013). Review of the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale—Third edition.
Goldstein, S., & Naglieri, J. (n.d.). Autism spectrum rating scales (ASRS). Web.
Gilliam Autism Rating Scale–Third edition. (n.d.). Web.
Lecavalier, L. (2005). An evaluation of the Gilliam Autism Rating Scale. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 35(6), 795-805.
Mayes, S. (n.d.). Checklist for autism spectrum disorder. Web.
Mayes, S., Murray, M., Calhoun, S., Morrow, J., Yurich, K., Mahr, F., … Petersen, C. (2009). Comparison of scores on the Checklist for Autism Spectrum Disorder, Childhood Autism Rating Scale, and Gilliam Asperger’s Disorder Scale for Children with Low Functioning Autism, High Functioning Autism, Asperger’s disorder, ADHD, and typical development. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 39(12), 1682-1693. Web.
Osborne, L., & Reed, P. (2008). An evaluation of the role of reinforcement-based interventions in determining the effectiveness of ‘eclectic’ approaches for teaching children with autism spectrum disorders. Behavioral Development Bulletin, 14(1), 30-39.
Randall, M., Egberts, K., Samanti, A., Scholten, R., Hooft, L., Livingstone, N., … Williams, K. (2018). Diagnostic tests for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in preschool children. Cochrane Database Systemic Review, 2018(7), CD009044.
Simek, A. N., & Wahlberg, A. C. (2011). Test review: Autism Spectrum Rating Scales. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 29(2), 191–195.