To read this content please select one of the options below:

Variables predicting the association between autistic traits and externalizing symptoms among young adults

María Álvarez-Couto (Departmental Unit of Personality, Evaluation and Clinical Psychology, Faculty of Education, Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain.)
Domingo García-Villamisar (Departmental Unit of Personality, Evaluation and Clinical Psychology, Faculty of Education, Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain.)
Gema P. Sáez-Suanes (Department of Education, Faculty of Education and Languages, Nebrija University, Madrid, Spain)
María d'Orey Roquete (Departmental Unit of Personality, Evaluation and Clinical Psychology, Faculty of Education, Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain.)

Advances in Autism

ISSN: 2056-3868

Article publication date: 10 September 2021

Issue publication date: 16 February 2022

104

Abstract

Purpose

Considering the high comorbidity of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) with externalizing disorders and that ASD is considered as a continuum, which implies the identification of it features in the whole population, the purpose of this paper is to know the characteristics of the association of externalizing symptoms in the population with ASD traits.

Design/methodology/approach

One hundred and seventeen postsecondary students participated in the study, providing responses to a battery of self-reported tests.

Findings

The existence of a significant association between ASD and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) (0.519; p < 0.01) was proved. Regression analyses showed that problems in executive functioning, working memory deficits and difficulties in the use of emotion regulation strategies predicted the presence of ADHD traits (F = 36.757, R2 = 62.3%, p < 0. 01) and impulsivity behavior (F = 18.249, R2 = 45.1%, p < 0.01).

Research limitations/implications

Externalizing symptomatology in people with higher ASD traits is extended to the general population. Future research should study other problematic behaviors, such as aggression or self-harm, to continue generating appropriate interventions.

Originality/value

The results reported reinforce the study of ASD as a dimensional disorder, in line with the latest advances in the classification of psychopathology. Considering which variables are behind the problematic behaviors allows interventions to be focused on these factors, contributing to their reduction and to the improvement of professional practices.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This work has not received any source of funding. Conflict of interests.The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Citation

Álvarez-Couto, M., García-Villamisar, D., Sáez-Suanes, G.P. and d'Orey Roquete, M. (2022), "Variables predicting the association between autistic traits and externalizing symptoms among young adults", Advances in Autism, Vol. 8 No. 2, pp. 178-189. https://doi.org/10.1108/AIA-06-2020-0036

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles