Clinical Focus


  • Psychology

Professional Education


  • University of California Santa Barbara (2008) CA
  • Fellowship:Yale University Child Study Center (2009) CT
  • Internship:Yale University Child Study Center (2008) CT

Current Research and Scholarly Interests


Over the past year, Dr. Gengoux's research has continued to focus on the design and evaluation of effective naturalistic behavioral treatment programs for young children with autism. Dr. Gengoux oversees the supervision of a team of therapists providing parent training and in-home treatment for a randomized controlled trial of Pivotal Response Treatment (PI: Hardan) which is nearing completion. Dr. Gengoux has also continued to strengthen the community partnership with Abilities United where she leads an innovative inclusive social skills research program (PI: Gengoux) focused on improving peer initiations made by children with ASD. A parent training program will be added in the coming year to enhance the program's effectiveness in fostering meaningful friendships for children. Preliminary findings from both projects have been presented at national and international conferences.

Clinical Trials


  • Parent Training to Enhance Social Success for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder Recruiting

    Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) exhibit characteristic deficits in social initiation and there are no empirically validated treatments specifically for this core deficit. While parent training is known to be a critical intervention component, few social skills programs involve parents. This study will capitalize on an existing social skills group already established at the community agency Abilities United, with the goal of enhancing the program's effectiveness by adding a parent component. Specifically, the proposed study will investigate whether a novel parent mediated social skills program (Social SUCCESS), which provides parent training in conjunction with a social skills group intervention, will result in more frequent initiations during play with typically developing peers. Participants will include 50 children with ASD age 4:0 to 6:11 years. Children will be randomly assigned to either Social SUCCESS (N=25) or waiting list (N=25). Treatment will be provided for 8 weeks during a weekly 120-minute social skills group at Abilities United. The study will evaluate the effects of Social SUCCESS on areas of core social deficit including frequency of peer initiations using parent ratings, observational measures, standardized questionnaires, and a social eye tracking task. Outcomes will be compared to a waiting list control group. Findings will be disseminated through presentations and publications to aid clinicians in providing more effective social skills treatment for children with ASD and to enhance the scientific knowledge-base related to evidence-based social skills treatments. This research designed with the goal of stimulating additional scientific inquiry in the area of treatment for core social deficits in ASD and will provide a strong foundation for larger scale grants to study motivation-based interventions to improve social functioning.

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  • An Evaluation of a Developmentally-Based Parent Training Program for Children With Autism Not Recruiting

    The purpose of this study is to assess the efficacy of a parent training program in the treatment of social and communication deficits in children with autism. Specifically, this study will evaluate a developmentally based parent delivered intervention in the community developed by Pacific Autism Center for Education (PACE).

    Stanford is currently not accepting patients for this trial. For more information, please contact Christina Ardel, MA, 650-736-1235.

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  • Social Motivation Intervention for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder: Improving Peer Initiation Not Recruiting

    The purpose of this study is to investigate whether a social initiation motivation intervention (SIMI) focused on training children with ASD to initiate to peers during structured play activities will result in more frequent initiations to typically developing peers during free play. The SIMI approach under investigation uses behavioral strategies based in Applied Behavior Analysis and Pivotal Response Treatment to motivate children with ASD to initiate to peers. Children with ASD will be randomly assigned to either the SIMI or a waiting list. Treatment will be provided for 8 weeks in the context of a weekly social skills group.

    Stanford is currently not accepting patients for this trial. For more information, please contact Rachel Schuck, 650-736-1235.

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2017-18 Courses


All Publications


  • Pivotal Response Treatment Parent Training for Autism: Findings from a 3-Month Follow-Up Evaluation JOURNAL OF AUTISM AND DEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS Gengoux, G. W., Berquist, K. L., Salzman, E., Schapp, S., Phillips, J. M., Frazier, T. W., Minjarez, M. B., Hardan, A. Y. 2015; 45 (9): 2889-2898
  • A randomized controlled trial of Pivotal Response Treatment Group for parents of children with autism. Journal of child psychology and psychiatry, and allied disciplines Hardan, A. Y., Gengoux, G. W., Berquist, K. L., Libove, R. A., Ardel, C. M., Phillips, J., Frazier, T. W., Minjarez, M. B. 2015; 56 (8): 884-892

    Abstract

    With rates of autism diagnosis continuing to rise, there is an urgent need for effective and efficient service delivery models. Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) is considered an established treatment for autism spectrum disorder (ASD); however, there have been few well-controlled studies with adequate sample size. The aim of this study was to conduct a randomized controlled trial to evaluate PRT parent training group (PRTG) for targeting language deficits in young children with ASD.Fifty-three children with autism and significant language delay between 2 and 6 years old were randomized to PRTG (N = 27) or psychoeducation group (PEG; N = 26) for 12 weeks. The PRTG taught parents behavioral techniques to facilitate language development. The PEG taught general information about ASD (clinical trial NCT01881750; http://www.clinicaltrials.gov).Analysis of child utterances during the structured laboratory observation (primary outcome) indicated that, compared with children in the PEG, children in the PRTG demonstrated greater improvement in frequency of utterances (F(2, 43) = 3.53, p = .038, d = 0.42). Results indicated that parents were able to learn PRT in a group format, as the majority of parents in the PRTG (84%) met fidelity of implementation criteria after 12 weeks. Children also demonstrated greater improvement in adaptive communication skills (Vineland-II) following PRTG and baseline Mullen visual reception scores predicted treatment response to PRTG.This is the first randomized controlled trial of group-delivered PRT and one of the largest experimental investigations of the PRT model to date. The findings suggest that specific instruction in PRT results in greater skill acquisition for both parents and children, especially in functional and adaptive communication skills. Further research in PRT is warranted to replicate the observed results and address other core ASD symptoms.

    View details for DOI 10.1111/jcpp.12354

    View details for PubMedID 25346345

  • Priming for Social Activities: Effects on Interactions Between Children With Autism and Typically Developing Peers JOURNAL OF POSITIVE BEHAVIOR INTERVENTIONS Gengoux, G. W. 2015; 17 (3): 181-192
  • Pivotal Response Treatment for Infants At-Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Pilot Study JOURNAL OF AUTISM AND DEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS Steiner, A. M., Gengoux, G. W., Klin, A., Chawarska, K. 2013; 43 (1): 91-102

    Abstract

    Presently there is limited research to suggest efficacious interventions for infants at-risk for autism. Pivotal response treatment (PRT) has empirical support for use with preschool children with autism, but there are no reports in the literature utilizing this approach with infants. In the current study, a developmental adaptation of PRT was piloted via a brief parent training model with three infants at-risk for autism. Utilizing a multiple baseline design, the data suggest that the introduction of PRT resulted in increases in the infants' frequency of functional communication and parents' fidelity of implementation of PRT procedures. Results provide preliminary support for the feasibility and utility of PRT for very young children at-risk for autism.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s10803-012-1542-8

    View details for Web of Science ID 000313073700009

    View details for PubMedID 22573001

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3571709

  • The Effectiveness of Contextually Supported Play Date Interactions Between Children With Autism and Typically Developing Peers Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities Koegel, R. L., Werner, G. A., Vismara, L. A., Koegel, L. K. 2005; 30 (2): 93-102

    View details for DOI 10.2511/rpsd.30.2.93

  • Feasibility and Effectiveness of Very Early Intervention for Infants At-Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Systematic Review JOURNAL OF AUTISM AND DEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS Bradshaw, J., Steiner, A. M., Gengoux, G., Koegel, L. K. 2015; 45 (3): 778-794

    Abstract

    Early detection methods for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in infancy are rapidly advancing, yet the development of interventions for infants under two years with or at-risk for ASD remains limited. In order to guide research and practice, this paper systematically reviewed studies investigating interventions for infants under 24 months with or at-risk for ASD. Nine studies were identified and evaluated for: (a) participants, (b) intervention approach (c) experimental design, and (d) outcomes. Studies that collected parent measures reported positive findings for parent acceptability, satisfaction, and improvement in parent implementation of treatment. Infant gains in social-communicative and developmental skills were observed following intervention in most of the reviewed studies, while comparisons with treatment-as-usual control groups elucidate the need for further research. These studies highlight the feasibility of very early intervention and provide preliminary evidence that intervention for at-risk infants may be beneficial for infants and parents.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s10803-014-2235-2

    View details for Web of Science ID 000350306600015

    View details for PubMedID 25218848

  • Predicting Developmental Status from 12 to 24 Months in Infants at Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Preliminary Report JOURNAL OF AUTISM AND DEVELOPMENTAL DISORDERS Macari, S. L., Campbell, D., Gengoux, G. W., Saulnier, C. A., Klin, A. J., Chawarska, K. 2012; 42 (12): 2636-2647

    Abstract

    The study examined whether performance profiles on individual items of the Toddler Module of the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule at 12 months are associated with developmental status at 24 months in infants at high and low risk for developing Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). A nonparametric decision-tree learning algorithm identified sets of 12-month predictors of developmental status at 24 months. Results suggest that identification of infants who are likely to exhibit symptoms of ASD at 24 months is complicated by variable patterns of symptom emergence. Fine-grained analyses linking specific profiles of strengths and deficits with specific patterns of symptom emergence will be necessary for further refinement of screening and diagnostic instruments for ASD in infancy.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s10803-012-1521-0

    View details for Web of Science ID 000310746300010

    View details for PubMedID 22484794

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3565427

  • Semantic and letter fluency in Spanish-English bilinguals NEUROPSYCHOLOGY Gollan, T. H., Montoya, R. I., Werner, G. A. 2002; 16 (4): 562-576

    Abstract

    Spanish-English bilinguals and English monolinguals completed 12 semantic, 10 letter, and 2 proper name fluency categories. Bilinguals produced fewer exemplars than monolinguals on all category types, but the difference between groups was larger (and more consistent) on semantic categories. Bilinguals and monolinguals produced the same number of errors across all category types. The authors discuss 2 accounts of the similarities and differences between groups and the interaction with category type, including (a) cross-language interference and (b) relatively weak connections in the bilingual lexical system because of reduced use of words specific to each language. Surprisingly, bilinguals' fluency scores did not improve when they used words in both languages. This result suggests that voluntary language switching incurs a processing cost.

    View details for DOI 10.1037//0894-4105.16.4.562

    View details for Web of Science ID 000178440800011

    View details for PubMedID 12382994