Emotional intelligence in adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Boily, Roxanne M. D.
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Impairments in social interactions are considered core symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Given recent findings demonstrating a relationship between emotional intelligence (EI) and social outcomes, this research examined the EI of adolescents with ASD to generate novel information for addressing their social deficits. Twenty-five adolescents with ASD and 25 typical adolescents (13 -17 years) completed a battery of tests examining their intellect, EI, and social skills. Their parents also provided information regarding their social skills. The findings revealed that aspects of both trait and ability EI were significantly weaker in adolescents with ASD. In addition, while the ability EI model did not predict the social outcomes of this group, the trait EI model was able to predict 32% of self-reported interpersonal skills and 30% of parent-reported social skills. Implications for the development of social skill interventions for this group and future research are discussed.