The Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) is a semi-structured, standardized assessment of communication, social interaction and play or imaginative use of materials for individuals who have been referred because of possible autism or autistic spectrum diagnosis. The ADOS can be used to evaluate individuals at different developmental levels and chronological ages, from toddlers to adults, from individuals with no speech to those who are verbally fluent.
The goal of the ADOS is to provide standardized information concerning the diagnosis of autism in the areas of social behavior, use of vocalizations/speech/gestures in social situations, and play and interests. Structured activities and materials provide standard contexts in which social interactions, communication, and other behaviors relevant to autistic spectrum disorders are observed.
The ADOS is an internationally recognized gold standard assessment for autism screening and diagnosis (when used in combination with additional assessment techniques).