Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Graduate Department of Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Kathleen Gathercoal, PhD

Second Advisor

Glena Andrews, PhD

Third Advisor

Elizabeth Hamilton, PhD


There is mounting evidence to suggest that higher numbers of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are being identified, including a wide range of severity and outcome (Eaves & Ho, 2008). As identification of ASD has improved, there is a larger proportion of identified young adults with ASD (YA-ASD) in the transition to adulthood (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2010). Though exceptionally talented in many cases, a large proportion YA-ASD have difficulty establishing independence and navigating the complex social nuances of a workplace, many end up “homebound” with difficulty finding employment (Daley, Weisner, & Singhal, 2014; Shattuck, Wagner, Narendorf, Sterzing, & Hensley, 2011; Taylor & Seltzer, 2011). It is quite likely that remaining homebound has far-reaching effects on the development of self-efficacy and mood functioning. In response to this challenge parents, advocates, and individuals with ASD have developed a technology-training program to help teach skills that will allow individuals with ASD to be independent: increasing skills and kindling hope for the future. The current study sought to explore the impact of the training program components on anxiety, depression, and friendships, specific to YA-ASD in the transition to adulthood. YA-ASD (n = 23) from vocational training program were given Achenbach System of Empirically Based Assessment - Adult Self-Report (ASR) before and after an 8-week period in a vocational program. Group and individual difference were measured for significant change. Few group significance was observed across the scales of the ASR. Some individual significance was observed, however no patterns of individual significance was found.