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Working with and adapting for Autism (ASD/ASC)

Harry Douglas

13 Dec 2023


Autistic individuals are shown to experience higher levels of mental health difficulties and comorbidities than the general population (Lai et al., 2019), and research suggests the autistic community struggle to access mental health support for multiple reasons (Cooper, Loades & Russell, 2018) (Binnie & Blainey, 2013). Though step 2 LICBT work has been shown to be an effective treatment for comorbid mental health difficulties in autistic individuals (Weston, Hodgekins & Langdon, 2016), research and training into the adaptation of this work to compliment autistic traits and problem solve common problems with accessing treatment remains limited. NICE guidelines (NICE, 2012) requires practitioners to be understand autism as a diagnosis, as well as it’s presentation and how to adapt for client needs, and additional training into specific adaptations has been demonstrated to improve practitioner confidence in working with autistic individuals, as well as improving client outcomes (Cooper et al., 2018).

The event will be equivalent to 2.3/4hrs of CPD.


This workshop will:
• Provide an overview of ASD/ASC, including prevalence, stats and assessment
• Discuss differential diagnosis
• Consider barriers to treatment for autistic people
• Cover general and specific adaptations to use with LICBT treatments
• Explore how to appropriately end treatment with autistic clients

Learning Objectives

You will learn:
• How to recognise and discuss autism with clients
• How to identify areas of difficulty within your work with autistic clients
• How to adapt your treatment plans

Training Modalities

Didactic content, mentimeter, Q&A

Key References

American Psychiatric Association. (2022). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed., text rev.).

Binnie, J., & Blainey, S. (2013). The use of cognitive behavioural therapy for adults with autism spectrum disorders: A review of the evidence. Mental Health Review Journal, 18(2), 93-104.

Cooper, K., Loades, M. E., & Russell, A. (2018). Adapting psychological therapies for autism. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 45, 43–50.

Lai, M.-C., Kassee, C., Besney, R., Bonato, S., Hull, L., Mandy, W., Szatmari, P., & Ameis, S. H. (2019). Prevalence of co-occurring mental health diagnoses in the autism population: A systematic review and meta-analysis. The Lancet Psychiatry, 6(10), 819–829.

NICE. (2012). Autism spectrum disorder in adults: Diagnosis and management

Weston, L., Hodgekins, J., & Langdon, P. E. (2016). Effectiveness of cognitive behavioural therapy with people who have autistic spectrum disorders: A systematic review and metaanalysis. Clinical psychology review, 49, 41-54.

About the presenter

Harry is a Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner. He is also the Neurodiversity Champion for his service, working closely with Autism services to provide LICBT intervention and groups to clients in adapted environments and with adapted treatments to suit their needs and increase accessibility. He is also involved in training clinical staff around Neurodiversity and appropriate adaptations to further help people access IAPT support.

Who should attend

This webinar is most suitable for practitioners delivering low intensity CBT interventions for patients in primary care presenting with depression and anxiety.

Low Intensity clinical contact hours survey - BABCP Low Intensity Special Interest Group

Please click below if you are interested in contributing to the survey.


The BACP Low Intensity SIG are interested in the impact of clinical contact hours on Low Intensity/Wellbeing Practitioner wellbeing. This questionnaire contains six multi-choice questions and a free text box for you to share your experiences. The answers to these questions will help the BABCP SIG plan how to meet CPD topics and other developments within the SIG.  The SIG hope to produce a write up of the answers to this questionnaire to be shared with SIG members and to be used in training.

View Survey

This FREE conference is for Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners working in Talking Therapies for Anxiety and Depression services and is brought to you by Bespoke Mental Health in collaboration with the NHS England Talking Therapies National PWP Leads Network

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