Best Practices in Supporting Social Participation of Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) : A Systematic Review.

Poster Presentation
Friday, May 11, 2018: 11:30 AM-1:30 PM
Hall Grote Zaal (de Doelen ICC Rotterdam)
E. L. Bussières1, J. Trépanier2, O. Laverdière3, M. H. Poulin4, D. St-Laurent5, J. Berbari6, C. Dumont7 and M. Couture8, (1)Psychology, Université du Quebec à Trois-Rivières, Trois-Rivières, QC, Canada, (2)Faculté de médecine et des sciences de la santé, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, QC, Canada, (3)FAculté de Médecine et des sciences de la santé, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, QC, Canada, (4)Psychoeducation, UQAT, Rouyn-Noranda, QC, Canada, (5)Psychoeducation, UQAT, Royn-Noranda, QC, Canada, (6)FAculté de médecine, Unviersité de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, QC, Canada, (7)Rehabilitation, UQTR, Trois-Rivières, QC, Canada, (8)Rehabilitation, Universite de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, QC, Canada
Background: The majority of ASD studies focuses on early childhood and early intervention (Howlin, 2008) while the challenges associated with autonomy and independent living is a major issue for avdults with ASD


The purpose of this systematic review (SR) is to document the effectiveness of interventions to support social participation of young adult with autism (16-40 years old). In this review, social participation is defined by three domains: social relations, employment and independent living.


A comprehensive literature search was conducted to identify published articles and unpublished dissertations, using the following databases ProQuest, Medline, PsycInfo, Cinhal, ERIC. The research covered the period from 1 January 2000 to 1 June 2016. Two persons independently screened articles for eligibility. Studies were included if they: 1) include more than 10 participants ; 2) focuses on at least one aspect of transition to adulthood, including social relations, employment and independent living. Critical appraisal of included studies was done independently by two persons, using the Scientific Merit Rating Scale (National Autism Center, 2015).


Fourteen studies were retained, evaluating work-related interventions (10 studies), independent living programs (3 studies) and a leisure program (1 study). Methodological quality varies greatly across studies. Among high quality studies, three different interventions appear promising: a leisure program and two programs related to work, including a virtual training to job interviews, and a school-based employability program including an internship.

Conclusions: This SR suggests that interventions targeting transition to adulthood may be beneficial; it also highlights the need for more research, especially regarding the effectiveness of programs targeting independent living.