Q & A with PDA experts

To mark the PDA Society's second annual awareness day on 15th May 2014, a group of experts kindly agreed to answer your questions on PDA.

Click on the name of the expert to read their answers.

Phil Christie, Consultant Child Psychologist, Elizabeth Newson Centre, NORSACA

  • Is PDA part of the autistic spectrum? / I would like to know what is currently happening to make PDA more than just 'increasingly recognised as part of the autism spectrum' / What will make the professionals who write the diagnostic manuals (DSM/ICD) actually take note of PDA as an autism spectrum disorder, and hopefully include it in their next revisions?
  • What are the differences between PDA and ODD and Attachment Disorder?

Ruth Fidler, Education Consultant, NORSACA Children's Services

  • We have heard some say that self awareness is beneficial, however our 11 year old daughter likes to use diagnoses as an excuse to avoid demands or to justify difficult behaviour. How can we educate her so that she gets the benefit from understanding her diagnosis?
  • How do schools include children with PDA in classroom learning?

Pat Smith, Specialist Child Psychologist, Head of Elizabeth Newson Centre, NORSACA

  • Is PDA part of the autistic spectrum?
  • What are the differences between PDA and Personality Disorders?

Julia Daunt, an adult diagnosed with PDA

  • Did you struggle with recognising and expressing your emotions as a child, and if so what if anything helped you with this?
  • How has PDA affected your ability to make and maintain friendships?
  • What sort of things do you find most difficult now as an adult; and is it different to when you were a child / young person?
  • What do you think adults with PDA need from services like social care, or diagnostic clinics?
  • Has having a PDA diagnosis helped you, and the other people around you to understand you better?
  • If you were able to go back and change anything about your experiences in school what would it be?

Jilly Davies, Senior Specialist Teacher, NAS Robert Ogden School

  • How do you meet the needs of children with PDA at the Robert Ogden School?

Further reading and information about PDA

If you are concerned that your child may have PDA: Please view our 'Does My Child Have PDA'? section of our website.

Adults with PDA: There is very little research that looks into the adult presentation of ASD with a profile of PDA. Therefore, much of the information below is based on our understanding and knowledge of children with PDA. For further information about how this presentation of ASD can manifest during the adult years please view adult life and our adult case studies.

Further information about PDA can be found in the following areas of our website.

The National Autistic Society also provide an increasing amount of information about PDA.


Please note that the PDA Society are not making any recommendations nor is responsible for the content of sites and links that are external to the PDA Society.

Please contact us if you discover any broken links