Publication Date



Open access

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)


Psychology (Arts and Sciences)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Marygrace Yale Kaiser - Committee Chair

Second Committee Member

Jennifer Stella Durocher - Committee Member

Third Committee Member

Daniel S. Messinger - Committee Member

Fourth Committee Member

Frank J. Penedo - Committee Member

Fifth Committee Member

Marjorie Montague - Committee Member


The SCQ is a popular screener for ASDs derived from the gold-standard diagnostic interview. This study examined the validity of the SCQ in a Hispanic sample. Additionally, the mother's expressed emotion toward her child with ASD was examined. Participants included 217 Hispanic and non-Hispanic white mothers of children with and without ASDs ages 4-10. The actual diagnostic status of all children was determined using a historical review of records. ROC curve analysis yielded much lower sensitivity and specificity than the original validation study, with very little difference found between the 15 and 22 cutoffs. A cutoff score of 12 performed the best with a sensitivity of .86 and specificity of .54 in distinguishing between ASD and Non-ASD. There were no significant findings in expressed emotion between Hispanics or Whites, nor did it predict SCQ score. Limitations included a small non-Hispanic White sample. Findings of this study corroborate recent validation results.


Hispanics; Screening; Autism; Expressed Emotion; Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ)