Brief Report: An Experimental Study of the Diagnostic Reliability for Autism Spectrum Disorder

Lauren J. Taylor, Paul Brown, Valsamma Eaten, Murray T. Maybery, Suzanne Midford, Jessica Paynter, Lyndsay Quarmby, Theresa Smith, Katrina Williams, Andrew J.O. Whitehouse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Previous research shows inconsistency in clinician-assigned diagnoses of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). We conducted an exploratory study that examined the concordance of diagnoses between a multidisciplinary assessment team and a range of independent clinicians throughout Australia. Nine video-taped Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) assessments were collected from two Australian sites. Twenty-seven Australian health professionals each observed two video-recordings and rated the degree to which the individual met the DSM-5 criteria for ASD. There was 100% agreement on the diagnostic classification for only 3 of the 9 video clips (33%), with the remaining 6 clips (66%) reaching poor reliability. In addition, only 24% of the participating clinicians achieved ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ levels of agreement (Cohen’s kappa > 0.6) with the original ASD assessment. These findings have implications for clinical guidelines for ASD assessments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1551-1558
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2017
Externally publishedYes


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