Job tips: A transition to employment program for individuals with autism spectrum disorders

Authors: Taylor, J. l., McPheeters, M., Sathe, N.A., Dove, D., Veenstra-VanderWeele, J. & Warren, Z.
Year Published 2013
Publication The Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Volume 43
Number 10
Pages 2472-2483
Publisher Springer

Shattuck et al. (2012) reported that youth with an ASD are uniquely at risk for negative post-school outcomes, as indicated by the fact that while only 55 % of those with an ASD are employed in the 6 years beyond high school, 86 % of those with a speech or language impairment, 94 % of those with a learning disability, and 69 % of those with an intellectual disability have found employment.


The current study evaluated the effectiveness of a treatment package comprised of a web-based interviewing skills program (JobTIPS) and virtual reality practice on responses to employment interview questions by adolescents with high functioning autism and Asperger‚ Disorder.


The setting was a University Research Center.


The study sample included 22 youth who were between the ages of 16–19 years old.

Data Collection

An Interview Skills Rating Instrument was developed by researchers. The first scale was Response Content: A 10 item scale that measures the content of the participant's response to 10 interview questions. The second scale: Response Delivery: 20 items that measure behaviors related to greetings and farewells (handshakes, eye contact, verbal greeting, verbal expression of appreciation at end of interview), as well as the non-verbal behaviors (body positioning, facial expressions) that accompany verbal responses during the actual interview questioning period.


Services as usual


The results of the study suggest that youth with ASD who completed the Job TIPS training program showed significant improvement in their job interviewing skills when compared to the control group. The program was more effective in teaching content rather than delivery skills. Participants were able to produce more appropriate verbal responses to interview questions following intervention, but the features that accompany those responses did not improve to the same degree.


The findings demonstrate that a web-based training program can be effective as an intervention method to improve employment related interviewing skills for individuals with ASD.

Disabilities Autism Spectrum Disorder
Populations Male
Outcomes Other
Research Design Quasi-experimental
Peer Reviewed Yes