University of Vermont

College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Patricia Prelock

Patricia Prelock, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

Dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders, University of Vermont College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Professor of Pediatrics, University of Vermont College of Medicine

Patricia Prelock

Office: Rowell Building
Phone: (802) 656-2216
Fax: (802) 656-2191

Patricia Prelock, Ph.D., is Dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Professor of Communication Sciences & Disorders, and Professor of Pediatrics in the College of Medicine at the University of Vermont. Dr. Prelock coordinates parent training programs designed for caregivers of children with autism spectrum disorders and has been awarded more than 11 million dollars in university, state and federal funding as a PI or Co-PI to develop innovations in interdisciplinary training supporting children and youth with neurodevelopmental disabilities and their families, to facilitate training in speech-language pathology, and to support her intervention work in autism spectrum disorders. She has more than 145 publications and 455 peer-reviewed and invited presentations in the areas of autism and other neurodevelopmental disabilities, collaboration, language assessment and intervention, and language learning disabilities. Dr. Prelock received the 1998 Friends Award through the Vermont Parent Information Center and the first annual Autism Society of Vermont Excellence in Service Award in 2000. She also received the University of Vermont’s Kroepsch-Maurice Excellence in Teaching Award in 2000. Dr. Prelock was named an ASHA Fellow in 2000 and a University of Vermont Scholar in 2003. She was awarded the Puppets Choice Award through Kids on the Block of Vermont in 2010 for her work in autism. In 2014, she and her colleagues received the Editor’s Award for the best paper in Contemporary Issues in Communication Sciences and Disorders.  Dr. Prelock earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Kent State University and her doctoral degree from the University of Pittsburgh. She is a Board Certified Specialist in Child Language, and a Hanen certified SLP for It takes Two to Talk, More Than Words and Talkability. She was the 2013 President for the American Speech-Language Hearing Association, a member organization of more than 175,000 speech-language pathologists and audiologists and serves as Immediate Past President in 2014.


B.S., Speech Pathology & Audiology, 1976, Kent State University; M.A., Speech Pathology, 1977, Kent State University; Ph.D., Speech-Language Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, 1983.

Courses Taught:

CMSI 295 - Summer Autism Institute
CMSI 299 - Autism Spectrum Disorders: Issues in Assessment and Intervention
CMSI 383 - Seminar in Language Learning Disabilities

Publication Highlights:

Journal Article, Academic Journal

Hebert, M.J., Kehayia, E., Prelock, P.A., Wood-Dauphinee, S., & Snider, L. (2014). Does occupational therapy play a role for communication in children with autism spectrum disorders? International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, published on line January 21, 2014; available at 10.3109/17549507.2013.876665.

Foran, J.*, Hutchins, T., Prelock, P.A., & Close, D.M. (2014). Examining the benefit of including a sibling in story-based interventions with a child with Asperger syndrome. Contemporary Issues in Communication Sciences and Disorders.

Hutchins, T., & Prelock, P.A. (2014). Using communication to reduce challenging behaviors in individuals with autism spectrum disorders and intellectual disability. Child Adolescent and Psychiatric Clinics in North America, 23, 41-55.

Prelock, P.A., & Hutchins, T1. (2013). The social validity of social storiesTM for supporting the behavioural and communicative function of children with autism spectrum disorder. International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology. (1first authorship shared)

*Potvin, M.-C., Snider, L., Prelock, P. A., Kehayia, E. &  Wood-Dauphinee, S. (2013). Health-related quality of life in children with high functioning autism. Autism: International Journal of Research and Practice, published 8 November 2013, 10.1177/1362361313509730

*Potvin, M.-C., Snider, L., Prelock, P.A., Kehayia, E., & Dauphinee, S. W. (2013). Patterns of recreational participation in high functioning autism. Journal of Autism & Developmental Disorders, 43 (2), 445-457. doi: 10.1007/s10803-012-1589-6

*Potvin, M.-C., Snider, L., Prelock, P., Kehayia, E., & Wood-Dauphinee, S. (2013). Psychometrics properties of the children’s assessment of participation and enjoyment and preference for activities of children in high-functioning autism. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 67, 1–9. 

Prelock, P.A., & Hutchins, T1. (2013). Parents’ perceptions of the efficacy of social storiesTM and comic strip conversations to support the social behaviors and theory of mind competence of their children with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Positive Behavioral Interventions 15 (3), 156-168. DOI:10.1177/1098300712457418. (1first authorship shared)

*Vivan, L., *Hutchins, T., & Prelock, P.A. (2012). A family centered approach for training parents to use comic strip conversations with their child with autism. Contemporary Issues in Communication Science and Disorders, 39, 30-42.

Cannizzaro, M., Dumas, J., Prelock, P. A., & Newhouse, P. (2012). Organizational structure reduces processing load in the prefrontal cortex during discourse processing of written language: Implications for high-level reading issues after TBI. Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, 22 (2), 67-78.

Hebert, M. L.J., Kehayia, E., Prelock, P.A., & Wood-Dauphinee, & Snider, L. (2012). Communication and occupation: New avenues for autism. Occupational Therapy Now, 14 (2), 22-23.

Prelock, P.A., & Nelson, N. (2012). Language and communication in autism: An integrated view. The Pediatric Clinics of North America 59, 129-145. doi:10.1016/j.pcl.2011.10.008

Chaudry, A., & Prelock, P.A. (2012). Enhancing the research and scholarship enterprise. Nurse Educator 37 (2), 54-55.

*Hutchins, T., Prelock, P.A., & Bonazinga, L. (2012).  Psychometric evaluation of the Theory of Mind Inventory (ToMI): A study of typically developing children and children with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 42 (3) 327-341. DOI 10.1007/s10803-011-1244-7

Cannizzaro, M., *Allen, E.A. & Prelock, P.A. (2011). Perceptions of communicative competence after traumatic brain injury: Implications for ecologically driven intervention targets. International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 13 (6), 549-559. (doi: 10.3109/17549507.2011.596571)

Prelock, P.A. (2011). Understanding the National Standards Project: Evidence-based interventions to support the language and social communication of children with ASD. Perspectives on School-Based Issues, 12 (2), 68-76.

Prelock, P.A., *Calhoun, J., Morris, H., & Platt, G. (2011). Supporting parents to facilitate communication and joint attention in their young children with ASD: Two pilot studies. Topics in Language Disorders, 31 (3), 210-234.

Lerner, M., *Hutchins, T., & Prelock, P.A. (2011). Brief report: Preliminary evaluation of the Theory of Mind Inventory (ToMI) and its relationship to measures of social skills. Journal of Autism & Development Disorders, 41, 512-517. DOI 10.1007/s10803-010-1066-z

Giangreco, M. F., Prelock, P. A., & Turnbull, H. R. (2010). An issue hiding in plain sight: When are speech-language pathologists special educators rather than related services providers? Language, Speech, Language & Hearing Services in Schools, 41, 531-538.

Hartwell, M., *Hutchins, T.L., Belin, G, & Prelock, P.A. (2010). Retention of school-based SLPs in Vermont: Relationships among job satisfactions, caseload, workload and best practice. Communication Disorders Quarterly, 31 (3), 139-154.

Book Chapters & Reviews

Potvin, M.C., Prelock, P.A., Snider, L., Beaudoin Savard, L. (2014). Promoting recreational engagement in children with autism spectrum disorders. In F. R. Volkmar (Ed.), Handbook of Autism & Pervasive Developmental Disorders, 4th edition (pp.871-886). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

Prelock, P.A., Gulbronson, M. D. M., Hutchins, T., Green, E., & Glascoe, F.P. (2013). Psychosocial risk, language development, and bilingual/dual language learners. In F. P. Glascoe, K.P. Marks, J.K. Poon, & M.M. Macias (Eds.), Identifying and Addressing Developmental-Behavioral Problems: A Practical Guide for Medical and Non-medical Professionals, Trainees, Researchers and Advocates (pp.200-233). Nolensville, Tennessee:, LLC, 2013.

Prelock, P. A. (2013). Forward. In M. G. Winner, Why teach social thinking? Questioning our assumptions about what it means to learn social skills. San Jose, CA: Think Social Publishing, Inc.

Prelock, P. A., Paul, R., & Allen, E. (2011). Evidence-based treatments in communication for children with autism spectrum disorders. In B. Reichow, P. Doehring, D. V. Cicchetti, & F. R. Volkmar (Eds.), Evidence-base treatments for children with autism (pp. 93-169). NY: Springer.

Selected Honors and Awards:
  • Editor’s Award, Contemporary Issues in Communication Sciences & Disorders, 2014
  • Cecil and Ida Green Honors Professor, Texas Christian University Visiting Scholar, 2011
  • Puppet's Choice Award in Autism, VT Kids on the Block & Puppets in Education, 2010
  • Academic Keys Who's Who in Health Sciences Higher Education, 2010
  • University Scholar, University of Vermont, 2003
  • ASHA Fellow, 2000
  • Kroepsch-Maurice Excellence in Teaching Award, University of Vermont, 2000
  • First Annual Autism Society of Vermont Excellence in Service Award, 2000
Professional Affiliations:

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Council for Exceptional Children
Autism Society of America
Vermont Speech & Hearing Association

Key Scholarly Research Interests:
  • The use of social stories and comic strip conversation to improve the behavior, communication and perspective taking of children with ASD
  • Parent training to support social communication in children with ASD
  • Facilitating the play and social interaction of preschool children with ASD and their typical peers
  • Assessing theory of mind in children with and without ASD

Last modified May 26 2015 12:20 PM