Thursday, September 27, 2012

Childhood Asperger Syndrome Test

I found the CAST or Childhood Asperger Syndrome Test to be very helpful in screening my son for a possible ASD.  He scored high - 25, well over the cutoff score of 15. This particular set of screening questions include the key [in the form of the underlined answer]. The assessor gives 1 point for all answers matching the underlined Yes or No. The maximum score is 31; any score below 15 is considered NT or typically developing.
Once a child has been screened [suspected] for an ASD, a comprehensive evaluation with a professional such as a developmental physician or a psychiatrist is required to further assess the child’s condition. In the US, a diagnosis from the DSM can only be made by a physician or a psychiatrist; in some cases, a psychologist specializing in autism spectrum disorders can diagnose this disorder.
UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE SOCIAL & COMMUNICATION DEVELOPMENT QUESTIONNAIRE - KEY

ASD relevant responses are underlined and score ‘1’. Maximum score possible is 31, cut-off currently is 15 for possible ASD or related social-communication difficulties.  Questions that are not underlined are controls

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Please read the following questions carefully, and circle the appropriate answer. All responses are confidential.
1. Does s/he join in playing games with other children easily?           Yes                  No

2. Does s/he come up to you spontaneously for a chat?                      Yes                  No

3. Was s/he speaking by 2 years old?                                                  Yes                  No

4. Does s/he enjoy sports?                                                                    Yes                  No

5. Is it important to him/her to fit in with the peer group?                   Yes                  No

6. Does s/he appear to notice unusual details that
          others miss?                                                                                Yes                  No

7. Does s/he tend to take things literally?                                             Yes                  No

8. When s/he was 3 years old, did s/he spend a lot of time

             pretending (e.g., play-acting being a superhero, or

             holding teddy’s tea parties)?                                                   Yes                  No

9. Does s/he like to do things over and over again,

            in the same way all the time?                                                   Yes                  No

10. Does s/he find it easy to interact with other

              children?                                                                                Yes                  No

11. Can s/he keep a two-way conversation going?                              Yes                  No

12. Can s/he read appropriately for his/her age?                                  Yes                  No

13. Does s/he mostly have the same interests as

      his/her peers?                                                                                Yes                  No

14. Does s/he have an interest which takes up so much

      time that s/he does little else?                                                       Yes                  No

15. Does s/he have friends, rather than just acquiantances?               Yes                  No

16. Does s/he often bring you things s/he is interested

              in to show you?                                                                     Yes                  No

17. Does s/he enjoy joking around?                                                    Yes                  No

 
18. Does s/he have difficulty understanding the rules

      for polite behaviour?                                                                     Yes                  No

19. Does s/he appear to have an unusual memory for

              details?                                                                                  Yes                  No

 20. Is his/her voice unusual (e.g., overly adult, flat, or

              very monotonous)?                                                               Yes                  No

 21. Are people important to him/her?                                                Yes                  No

22. Can s/he dress him/herself?                                                          Yes                  No

23. Is s/he good at turn-taking in conversation?                                 Yes                  No
 
24. Does s/he play imaginatively with other

              children, and engage in role-play?                                        Yes                  No

25. Does s/he often do or say things that are tactless

      or socially inappropriate?                                                              Yes                  No

26. Can s/he count to 50 without leaving out any

              numbers?                                                                               Yes                  No

27. Does s/he make normal eye-contact                                              Yes                  No

28. Does s/he have any unusual and repetitive

              movements?                                                                           Yes                  No

29. Is his/her social behaviour very one-sided and

              always on his/her own terms?                                               Yes                  No

30. Does s/he sometimes say “you” or “s/he” when

              s/he means “I”?                                                                     Yes                  No

31. Does s/he prefer imaginative activities such as

              play-acting or story-telling, rather than numbers

              or lists of facts?                                                                     Yes                  No

 32. Does s/he sometimes lose the listener because of

              not explaining what s/he is talking about?                            Yes                  No

 33. Can s/he ride a bicycle (even if with stabilisers)?                        Yes                  No

 34. Does s/he try to impose routines on him/herself,

              or on others, in such a way that it causes problems?              Yes                  No

35. Does s/he care how s/he is perceived by the rest of

              the group?                                                                               Yes                  No
 
36. Does s/he often turn conversations to his/her

              favourite subject rather than following what the other

              person wants to talk about?                                                  Yes                  No

37. Does s/he have odd or unusual phrases?                                      Yes                  No

SPECIAL NEEDS SECTION

38. Have teachers/health visitors ever expressed any

 concerns about his/her  development?                                               Yes                  No

 If Yes, please specify...................................................................................................

39. Has s/he ever been diagnosed with any of the following?          

Language delay                                                                                   Yes                  No

Hyperactivity/Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)                              Yes                  No

Hearing or Visual Difficulties                                                            Yes                  No

Autism Spectrum Condition, incl. Asperger’s Syndrome                  Yes                  No

A physical disability                                                                           Yes                  No

Other (please specify)                                                                         Yes                  No

 

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