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Strengths and Challenges

Download the origional PDF, here


Strengths and Challenges 
Created by Stephen Shore 
It is important to note that this is a general list. For every strength and challenge, you will often find examples in people that prove the opposite. For example, clumsiness is a common challenge. However, some with Asperger Syndrome have significant strengths in movement and balance, perhaps as a dancer.



Attention to detail

Grasping the “big” picture

Often highly skilled in a particular area

Uneven set of skills 

Deep study resulting in encyclopedic knowledge on areas of interest

Difficulty in developing motivation to study areas not of interest

Tendency to be logical (helpful in decisionmaking where emotions may interfere)

Difficulty perceiving emotional states of other


Less concern for what others may think of them (can be a strength and a challenge).  

Perceiving unwritten rules of social interaction. But can learn these rules through direct instruction and social narratives social as Power Cards (Gagnon, 2004)

Also known as independent thinking.  Often results in novel "big picture" insights due to different ways of looking at things, ideas, and concepts.

Difficulty processing in non-favorite modalities such as aural, kinesthetic, etc.


Usually visual processing (thinking in pictures or video)


Difficulty parsing out and summarizing important information for a conversation

Often very verbal (Propensity of giving detailed descriptions may be useful in providing directions to lost persons)


Sensory integration problems where input may register unevenly, distorted, and difficulty in screening out background noise


Direct communication



Generalization of skills and concepts


Difficulty expressing empathy in ways that others expect or understand

Nonjudgemental listening

Executive functioning resulting in difficulties planning long-term tasks

Average to above average intelligence