Social communication assessment
A social communication assessment assesses your child’s ability to use their language and communication skills appropriately in social situations, across various settings with various people. It is used by the speech and language therapist to establish what social communication difficulties your child is experiencing on a daily basis and the impact of these difficulties on their quality of life. This assessment can be used with all children who are experiencing difficulties with communicating with others in an appropriate manner.
Speech and language therapists work with children to help them increase their social communication skills to their best potential. Speech and language therapists will work on increasing children’s social interaction, conversational skills and ability to recognise and express emotions as well as increase their non-verbal skills. Using the information gained from the assessment our speech and language therapist will work with you, your child and their school to create an individualised therapy programme that combines your child’s difficulties, goals and motivators.
Benefits of a social communication assessment
- Identification of social communication difficulties or disorder.
- Information gained to aid the diagnosis of Autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
- Information gained from assessment can aid therapy programme.
A social communication assessment will help establish what difficulties your child is having with social communication, the information from the assessment can be used to increase your child’s interaction and communication skills across all communicative settings. The assessment will help create an individualised therapy programme as well as specific advice on how to help your child increase their skills.
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What will the social communication assessment assess?
Social communication skills refers to the child’s ability to socially use their language; it includes social interaction, social cognition, and pragmatic skills, it also requires appropriate receptive and expressive language abilities. The social communication assessment will be based around these areas. Social communication skills develop with age and therefore the assessment and what is assessed within these areas will vary according to the child’s age. A social communication assessment will assess:
- Conversational skills e.g. initiation, turn taking, joint attention, topic maintenance flexibility to appropriately change topic.
- Grice maxims of conversation.
- Acknowledgement and repair of conversational breakdown.
- Comprehension of the verbal and non-verbal communication of others across settings.
- Use of non-verbal communication to express feelings, thoughts and emotions.
- Ability to acknowledge and use communication for a range of social functions.
- Understanding and recognition of feeling in self and others.
- Social understanding of situations.
- Understanding of idioms.
- Flexibility to modify language according to situations and conversational partner.
Why is a social communication assessment needed?
Social communication is vital when interacting with others. It is the basis of relationships and interactions with family members, peers, teachers and other communication partners. Social communication allows children to understand and predict others behaviours and opinions. A child who struggles with social communication may experience many difficulties on a daily basis, such as partaking in conversations with peers, family members or in an academic or social situation. Children may struggle to make meaningful and long term friendships or relationships with others. Children may often get in trouble for appearing as rude, inconsiderate and inappropriate when in reality children may not be aware that their actions were wrong or that their actions may cause offence. Such difficulties can develop and follow through to adult life, impacting children’s emotional, social, and vocational wellbeing. A social communication assessment can help identify or aid in the diagnosis of:
- Social communication difficulties
- Social communication disorder
- Autism spectrum disorder
- High-functioning autism
- Pragmatic language impairment
The assessment results will help the speech and language therapist to create a unique therapy programme that is specific to the social communication difficulties experienced by your child. Speech and language therapy can help increase your child’s social communication skills to help them improve their social interaction, shared enjoyment and social reciprocity.
Typical conditions that require a social communication assessment
Below are some of the common conditions the social communication assessment is used for:
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Acquired head / brain injury
- High-functioning autism
- Learning disability
- Developmental disability
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
- Psychological / emotional disorders
- Specific language impairment
Our speech and language therapists can help children with a range of difficulties and conditions, including children who have not been diagnosed or identified with a specific condition. The social communication assessment will help recognise the specific difficulties your child is experiencing and the impact of these difficulties on their social and emotional development. Our speech and language therapist can provide therapy to help increase your child’s social communication skills.
What information will I receive following a social communication assessment?
After an assessment our speech and language therapist will provide a summary of the assessment and its results. Following an assessment you can request a report that details the findings of the assessment. The report will also contain information about how the difficulties, disorder or impairment is impacting on your child’s communication and daily activity. The report will also contain a treatment plan and recommendations on how to improve your child’s social communication skills and communication.
Treatment following a social communication assessment
Some of the available social communication and therapy paediatric treatments are listed below:
- Social communication intervention.
- Parental involvement therapy/ parent child interaction therapy.
- Peer involvement therapy.
- Social scripts.
- Social stories.
- Social skills strategy.
- Social skills group.
- Talk about.
- Social use of language.
- Pragmatic skills training.
- Play therapy.
We offer a wide range of treatments, if you feel that your child could benefit from a certain therapy programme contact our speech and language therapist for more details. Email email@example.com or call us on 0330 088 2298.
The social communication assessment is used to identify difficulties with social interaction, conversational skills and non-verbal and verbal language. The social communication assessment is suitable for a range of conditions and can identify problems such as a social communication disorder or aid in the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder.
Our social communication assessment is used by the speech and language therapists to develop your child’s therapy plan. If you would like more information on our assessments please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 0330 088 2298.