Autism Social-Communication Clinic

The Autism Social-Communication Clinic is a therapy program where clinicians and parents/caregivers collaborate to develop strategies to help children who are on the autism spectrum learn new social-communication skills. The clinic is built on the belief that the best way to support a child's wellness and developmental health is to support the family's wellness and sense of self-efficacy. It is also built on the belief that natural, authentic routines across home, school, and the community provide the best educational and treatment contexts for communication and socialization.

Current research shows that language therapy for children on the autism spectrum is most effective when it targets communication in familiar and authentic social environment and with meaningful partners. The most successful programs combine the expertise of parents/caregivers with the knowledge of trained language specialists. We support families and therapeutic teams to create home and school environments that facilitate communication development in children on the autism spectrum through everyday activities. We aim to do so while honoring your family's language and cultural practices.

We work with children across the autism spectrum, to accomplish the following:

  • Fostering the social foundations of communication through joint attention, social-emotional attunement, and extended engagement
  • Promoting the advancement of social-communication skills through the use of symbols and language
  • Fostering conversations and extended social interactions for children with more advanced language skills
  • Fostering shared interest, enjoyment, and communication with peers through play

What to Expect in the Autism Social-Communication Clinic

  • Clinicians and parents work closely together to set therapy goals.
  • Anyone who cares for or teaches your child is welcome to participate anytime. Please feel free to invite them.
  • During the academic year, the program includes a total of 24 hours of service per semester over 12 weeks. 
  • Families who enroll for the academic year are asked to commit to enrollment for both Fall and Spring semesters.
  • Each family will be partnered with a Graduate Student Clinician in the Communicative Disorders program who is receiving specialized training in autism spectrum disorders.
  • All student clinicians are supervised by associate professor, Betty Yu, Ph.D., CCC-SLP or another qualified clinical instructor.
  • Parents and clinicians work together to share relevant research, assess the child's current skills, identify therapy goals, and implement therapy strategies
  • A comprehensive report is available at the end of the semester.
  • All program activities will be video recorded for instructional purposes.
  • The clinic fee is $550 per semester, but sliding scales are available and no families are ever turned away.

Enrolling in the Autism Social-Communication Clinic

If you are interesting in enrolling in the clinic, please contact Dr. Betty Yu ( or the SLHS Clinic Office for an application.

Phone: (415) 338-1001


Fax: (415) 338-0916