Preferred Name

Ava Sardoni

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Department of Graduate Psychology


Trevor F. Stokes

Anne Stewart

Lora Henderson

Benjamin Riden


Neurodevelopmental Disorders (NDDs) are an increasingly-common presentation that is often associated with significant behavioral and relational challenges. NDDs can impact multiple areas of functioning including social, academic, and adaptive functioning. As NDDs are developmental disorders in nature, they are often lifelong conditions that require intensive treatments and adaptations throughout the lifespan. One of the most important predictors of success and fulfillment for a child with an NDD is the support from the family system.

Siblings of a child with an NDD are often neglected from the conversation of supports and treatments for children with NDDs. However, challenging behaviors often associated with NDDs can have a significant impact on the sibling relationship, which could result in a compromised quality of life for all the siblings.

Despite the importance of the sibling relationship on outcomes for children with NDDs, the focus on sibling interventions for NDDs and challenging behaviors is limited. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) have both shown to be efficacious in producing positive outcomes for children with challenging behaviors and NDDs and their families.

This study utilized a concurrent multiple baseline experimental design across sibling behaviors and across families. The current study expanded PCIT and ABA research to the NDD population, by documenting how siblings can effectively learn and utilize the Child-Directed Interaction (CDI) skills of PCIT to help strengthen the sibling relationship with a child with an NDD.



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