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Digital Recordings

Autism Assessment in Adults: Differentiating the Complexities of Autism from Co-Occurring Mental Health Issues

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Wenn Lawson, PhD
1 Hour 36 Minutes
Mar 24, 2022
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Digital Recordings


Autism diagnoses in adults are on the rise.

Adults are now reporting that their childhood diagnosis of anxiety, ODD, OCD, alone doesn’t make sense – autism is suspected.

How do you separate the complex characteristics of autism from common co-occurring mental health diagnosis?

In this session, autistic psychologist, speaker, and author, Dr. Wenn Lawson will teach you to how to assess for autism and separate it from other co-occurring mental health issues in adults.

Watch and learn:

  • How to interlace a neurodiversity affirming lens with DSM-5™ diagnostic criteria
  • The interplay between poor mental health and autism and impact of unmet needs
  • How autism presents differently in different gender identities

The impact of a diagnosis in adulthood can lead to self-injury, employment and relationship problems, other mental health issues including suicidality.



This online program is worth 1.75 hours CPD.



Wenn Lawson, PhD's Profile

Wenn Lawson, PhD Related seminars and products

Dr. Wenn is an autistic researcher (PDAer), has 3 autistic offspring and 3 autistic granddaughters. Wenn is also a lecturer, psychologist, advocate, and poet, sharing his experiences for almost 3 decades. Wenn is published internationally, is an Associate Researcher with Curtin University (WA), and Macquarie University, NSW; Tutor Practitioner with Birmingham University (UK), a Board member for Autism in Adulthood, and the Australian Research Council, Ambassador for I CAN (Autistic Youth Advocacy), and has a YouTube channel and home page. In 2008, he won 4th place as Victorian Australian of the Year, in 2017 he presented to the United Nations on matters of Autism and ageing & in 2021 he won the Lesley Hall, disability leadership lifetime achievement award. Wenn is passionate about all things LGBTQIA+ and autism.

Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Dr. Wenn Lawson maintains a private practice and receives royalties as a published author. He receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc. He has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Dr. Wenn Lawson is a member of the Australian Autism Research Council (ACRC).

Additional Info

Program Information

Access for Self-Study (Non-Interactive)

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  1. Integrate a neurodiversity affirming lens with DSM-5™ diagnostic criteria to assess for adult autism.
  2. Appraise whether exhibiting symptoms are related to autism or a co-occurring mental health diagnosis.
  3. Determine how autism presents differently in different gender identities.
  4. Evaluate the interplay between autism and poor mental health and the clinical implications including when to refer.


  • Autism Assessment in Adults 
  • Teasing out autism from co-occurring mental health diagnosis 
  • Integrating a neurodiversity affirming lens with DSM-5™ diagnostic criteria 
  • How autism presents differently in different gender identities 
  • The interplay between poor mental health and autism 
  • Reasons for a referral

Target Audience

  • Addiction Counselors
  • Counselors
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Nurses
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physicians
  • Psychologists
  • Speech-Language Pathologists
  • Social Workers
  • Teachers/School-Based Personnel
  • Other Mental Health Professionals


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