Document Type : Research Article (s)


1 Department of Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz Branch, Tabriz, Iran

2 Department of Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, Azarbaijan Shahid Madani University, Tabriz, Iran

3 Department of Psychology, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz Branch, Tabriz, Iran


Background: The most problematic issue for autistic children is believed to be recognizing lie from reality due to their inability in mind reading. These children have numerous problems in recognizing the feelings and predicting others’ emotional states. The present study aimed to examine the effectiveness of mindreading skills training on the improvement of social behaviors of children with autism spectrum disorder.
Methods: We conducted the present study in 2020 in Tabriz, Iran. The method herein was semi-experimental with pre-test and post-test design with control group, such that the statistical population included the children with autism spectrum disorder. A 46-subject sample size was selected. The sampling method was Convenience sampling. The participants were randomly assigned to the intervention (n=23) and control (n=23) groups. For classifying the subjects in the intervention or the control group, a simple random coin-throwing method was employed. In the procedure of data analysis, the Matson’s social skills questionnaire was applied. The experimental group received eight 1.5-hour sessions of training based on mind reading. The data was analyzed through ANCOVA method with SPSS version 23.
Results: Following the implementation of treatment sessions, the dependent variables in the intervention group changed, which were different from those in the control group. In this regard, the mean of social behavior (37.73±4.02, P=0.001) increased after the treatment sessions. In contrast, the mean of antisocial behaviors (25.13±2.31, P=0.001), after the treatment sessions, decreased in the intervention group. In fact, mindreading skills training was effective in of the reduction in antisocial behaviors in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Moreover, the mean of aggressions and compulsive behavior (23.87±2.09, P=0.001) decreased in the intervention group after the training sessions in comparison with that in the control group. Additionally, the mean of priority seeking and having high confidence to one self (10.80±3.40, P=0.001) along with relation with peers (27.07±2.32, P=0.001) increased in comparison with those in the control group.
Conclusion: Mindreading skills training is effective in the improvement of social behaviors in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).


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