Date of Completion


Document Type

Honors College Thesis


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Thesis Type

Honors College

First Advisor

Dr. Patricia Prelock

Second Advisor

Dr. Sue Kasser

Third Advisor

Dr. Emily Coderre


Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Maternal Education, Social Story, Theory of Mind, Research


Populations that have been previously studied in Autism Spectrum Disoder (ASD) seldom identify the impact for varying levels of socio-economic status on outcomes, particularly the impact of maternal education. Fourteen participants (4 with ASD; 10 without ASD), ages 7 to 13, were drawn from a larger study examining brain-behavior connections in ASD and response to a Theory of Mind intervention. Children with and without ASD were assessed for Theory of Mind (ToM) understanding, language, and nonverbal intelligence prior to the start of a Social Story intervention focused on one of the following emotions: desire-based emotions, surprise, and embarrassment. Following a nine-week intervention, ToM skills were reassessed and served as a comparative measure of change. Results have been examined to determine improvement in Theory of Mind following intervention, and whether any influence of maternal education improvement was observed. Preliminary results indicate that individuals who score the same or improve on the ToMTB also improve on the ToMI-2. No clinically significant differences were noted in maternal ratings of their children’s Theory of Mind (ToM) based on maternal education. Mothers with and without a college education saw differences in their children’s ToM performance following intervention.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

Available for download on Friday, May 12, 2023