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

Second Committee Member

Jennifer Stella Durocher

Third Committee Member

Daniel S. Messinger

Fourth Committee Member

Frank J. Penedo

Fifth Committee Member

Marjorie Montague


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)