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Digital Seminar

High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder

A Person-Centered Approach to High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder

The higher functioning (previously known as Asperger's Disorder) population of Autism Spectrum Disorders has recently received a great deal of attention. DSM-5® no longer diagnoses individuals as Asperger's Disorder or PDD-NOS; they are included in the broader Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) label. This presents significant changes to the way professionals diagnose and treat this population.

Mr. Kowalski will teach you how to apply a person-centered approach to treating individuals on the higher end of the Autism Spectrum Disorder. You will encounter the typical deficits seen in the domain of social-interaction and obtain intervention techniques to address tact, proxemics, social rules, egocentricity, naiveté, and jocularity. Obsessive interests, poor play skills, dislike of physical contact, and gullibility that are often associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder will be addressed. Expand your ability to treat social-communication deficits such as abuse of conversational rules, prosody, perseverative questioning, abstract reasoning, pedantic speech, and nonverbal communication skills. Enhance clients' emotional regulation with specific techniques designed to improve stress, anxiety, self-esteem, change, ritualism, and sensory overload, and how to recognize emotional states in themselves and others.

In addition, this recording offers extensive strategies to enhance the academic needs of the ASD client by focusing on seven core academic issues: initiating work assignments, increasing motivation, decreasing distraction, compensating for gross and fine motor deficits, adapting the curriculum, academic modifications, and increasing cognitive processing. End the recording feeling empowered and ready to employ these techniques, resulting in improved outcomes and functional daily living.


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Timothy Kowalski, MA, CCC-SLP
5 Hours 29 Minutes
Audio and Video
Mar 23, 2015
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Digital Seminar
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Continuing Professional Development Certificates - PESI Australia, in collaboration with PESI in the USA, offers quality online continuing professional development events from the leaders in the field at a standard recognized by professional associations including psychology, social work, occupational therapy, alcohol and drug professionals, counselling and psychotherapy. On completion of the training, a Professional Development Certificate is issued after the individual has answered and submitted a quiz and course evaluation. This online program is worth 5.5 hours CPD.



Timothy Kowalski, MA, CCC-SLP's Profile

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Timothy P. Kowalski, M.A., CCC-SLP, is a licensed speech-language pathologist specializing in social-pragmatic communication deficits and internationally known expert on Asperger Syndrome. His Orlando practice has seen clients from Europe, South America and throughout the USA. Mr. Kowalski regularly consults to schools on best practices for students identified or suspected of having Asperger’s syndrome and provides schoolwide district inservices.

Mr. Kowalski presents internationally on a wide variety of issues relative to Asperger’s, is a guest lecturer at universities and colleges and is a consultant for forensic cases involving Asperger’s syndrome. He has worked in a variety of psychiatric healthcare delivery systems including in-patient and outpatient psychiatric hospitals, sex offender units, and school-based settings. Mr. Kowalski is the author of six books on Asperger syndrome: Asperger Syndrome Explained; Social-Pragmatic Success for Asperger Syndrome and Other Related Disorders; Are You In The Zone?; The Source for Asperger’s Syndrome; Me, Myself, and You; Understanding Emotions: A Guide for Adults; and an article entitled Assessing Social Communication in Asperger Syndrome.

He holds the position of vice president of professional practices in speech-language pathology for the Florida Speech-Language-Hearing Association and is also a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Autism Society of America, Council for Behavior Disorders, and the Council for Exceptional Children. Mr. Kowalski is the recipient of the “2010 Clinician of the Year Award” offered by the Florida Association of Speech- Language Pathologists and Audiologists and the 2011 FLASHA nominee for the ASHA Louis M. di Carlo Award for Recent Clinical Achievement. He holds the “TEAMS 2000 Speech-Language Pathologist of the Year” award for his work with Autism in the four-countywide greater Orlando, Florida metropolitan area and has served on the board of directors for the Greater Orlando Chapter of the Autism Society of America.


Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Timothy Kowalski receives royalties from Professional Communication Services, Inc. He receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: Timothy Kowalski is a member of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the Autism Objectives Society of America and the Florida Association for Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists.

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Program Information

Access for Self-Study (Non-Interactive) Access never expires for this product.


  1. Determine how to develop social awareness in clients for the purposes of client psychoeducation
  2. Ascertain how mirror neurons impact social awareness, and describe how this impacts the clinician's choice of treatment strategy
  3. Discuss the social triad of interaction, communication, and emotional regulation, with clinical intervention techniques to address deficits in these areas
  4. Detect fine motor difficulties and how to address them in clients
  5. Recognize when sensory difficulties are present and determine how to address them in clients
  6. Examine gross motor difficulties and how to address them in clients
  7. Ascertain how to address problem academic behaviors with clinical interventions to reduce instances of talking off-task, daydreaming, ignoring new information, reading comprehension, tendency to focus on unimportant information, organization, self-monitoring skills, time management, procrastination, problem-solving, literalism, and perfectionism



  • Comparison of three major classification systems
    • DSM-5® compared to DSM IV-TR®
    • ICD-10
    • Gillberg’s Criteria




  • Tools for higher functioning individuals
  • Tools for pragmatic language assessment


  • Comparison of common clinical misdiagnoses


  • Executive function
  • Central coherence
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Anxiety


  • Identify behavioral issues related to social interaction
  • Intervention strategies designed to address areas of social interaction


  • Identify issues related to social communication
  • Intervention strategies designed to address areas of social communication


  • Identify behavioral issues related to social emotional regulation
  • Intervention strategies designed to address areas of social emotional regulation


  • Identify organizational difficulties
  • Identify issues impacting academic success
  • Intervention strategies
    • To assist in initiating work assignments
    • To increase motivation
    • To increase attention
    • For curriculum adaptation
    • For academic modification
    • For improving reading comprehension
    • To improve cognitive processing


  • Identify issues and interventions for improving gross motor skills


  • Identifying four fine motor issues
  • Intervention strategies for improving fine motor skills



  • Case study diagnosis
  • Developing treatment goals 

Target Audience

  • Speech-Language Pathologists
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Occupational Therapy Assistants
  • Physical Therapists
  • Physical Therapist Assistants
  • School Psychologists
  • Social Workers
  • Counselors
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists


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