Testing and Diagnosis

a child with autism  using an adaptive communication  device
How do we get a Diagnosis of ASD?
October 6, 2021

Diagnosing autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can be difficult because there is no medical test, like a blood test, to diagnose the disorder.  Those qualified, look at the child’s developmental history and behavior to make a diagnosis.

ASD can sometimes be detected as early as 18 months. By age 2, a diagnosis by an experienced professional can be considered very reliable.

Some early signs that you can look for include:

  • Avoiding eye contact,
  • Having little interest in other children or caretakers,
  • Limited display of language (for example, having fewer words than peers or difficulty with use of words for communication), or
  • Getting upset by minor changes in routine.

Here at BHCSCT we can evaluate your child if you have any concerns that your child may be on the spectrum. Its a fun evaluation which gives us information that will allow us to recommend the best course of action for your child. You are not required to seek services through BHCS after an evaluation, but we do service all of CT and have an amazing team!

Here are the screenings we may do to help with a diagnosis.



Screening gauges risk for autism and, when appropriate, recommends when parents should seek further testing and evaluation. A positive screening result is not a diagnosis and does not indicate the presence of autism. For children eventually diagnosed with autism, early detection enables more effective treatment.

A comprehensive diagnostic evaluation for autism relies on observing and measuring behavioral characteristics and is typically conducted by a licensed clinician. A pediatrician or primary care provider can refer the child and family to a licensed specialist. Once a  formal diagnosis is determined, the next step in a comprehensive assessment of what treatment services may be indicated.   At BHCS to perform diagnostic procedures a licensed clinician is a trained expert in diagnostics.



Provides a snapshot of behavioral and emotional functioning, quickly identifying children and adolescents aged 3 to 18 years who might be in need of additional support.



Some interactions are intended to offer a high level of structure for the participant, while others are intended to provide less structure. Interactions and the participant’s responses are then coded in a standardized manner. An algorithm, which sums the scores of coded items, yields a classification indicative of autism.

Skilled Based Assessments


An FBA is an approach to figuring out why a learner acts a certain way. It uses different methods to understand what’s behind behavior challenges such as Interviews, Records Review, Direct Observation, Structured ABC (Antecedent - Behavior - Consequence) Data Collection, Functional Summary Statements and a comprehensive list of Recommendations.


PEAK is an evidence-based assessment and corresponding curriculum that combines the traditional ABA verbal behavior approach with the science of Derived Relational Responding, which teaches the ability to make relations between concepts.


A device for assessing skills in children with language and learning deficits and is most commonly used in the process of the development of a behavioral program for children in the autism spectrum.


Provides a systematic way to evaluate, track, and teach functional, adaptive, and self-help skills so that individuals with autism or developmental delays can become more independent


Offers a systematic way to evaluate children with autism or other developmental disabilities, assessing current language and social skills, identifying impediments to learning, analyzing needs, guiding curriculum, and tracking growth

If you have any concerns please don't wait to have your child evaluated. As stressful and overwhelming as this can be, early intervention is instrumental in treatment and managing your child's diagnosis. Learning to live with an autistic child can be an adjustment. We are here to help!!