Special Education M.A.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Silmser, Lisa


As educators, we have seen Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), anxiety levels, mental health issues, and explosive behaviors rise in the general education population as well as the special education population in the last five years. The need for effective research based treatment plans is a very high demand in order to best serve our rising ASD population with comorbid anxiety in the school setting. There is building evidence in research that supports positive outcomes when using Cognitive Behavioral Therapies (CBT) for adolescents with ASD comorbid with anxiety who have some emotion recognition abilities as well as age appropriate intellectual and verbal abilities (McNally, Keehn, Lincoln, Brown, & Chavira 2013). Ung et al. (2015) believes there should be continued research surrounding this issue in order to really understand the moderators and other factors that have an influence on treatment efficacy and how to produce the greatest post treatment reduction in anxiety symptoms. There has been research since that would imply that CBT does in fact have a lasting impact on children when they measure effectiveness at 1-year, 2-year, and 3-year post CBT treatment plans. Continued research into what combinations work best as a treatment plan to most effectively serve our ASD population is needed, however CBT is a promising start.

Degree Name

Special Education M.A.

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis