Blending the art of psychotherapy
with the science of behavior analysis

PEERS® Social Skills Program

The Program for the Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills (PEERS®) was originally developed at UCLA by Dr. Elizabeth Laugeson, Founder and Director of the UCLA PEERS® Clinic, and Dr. Fred Frankel. Since its inception in 2005, PEERS® has expanded to locations across the U.S. and around the world. PEERS® is a manualized, social skills training intervention for adolescents and young adults. It has a strong evidence-base for use with teens and young adults with autism spectrum disorders, Asperger syndrome and similar social and communication challenges but is also appropriate for other populations. Recent research has demonstrated that gains made over the course of this program are maintained 3-5 years later (Laugeson et al., 2013).

PEERS® is different from other Social Skills Programs because it

  • Is evidence-based
  • Includes parents
  • Is structured like a class, not a therapy group
  • Teaches ecologically valid social skills based on how socially successful individuals behave
  • Breaks down social skills into understandable steps taught in an effective way
  • Builds in the generalization of skills to "real life" settings
  • Teaches skills that transfer to the workplace

PEERS® for Young Adults

PEERS® for Young Adults (Ages 19-29) is a 16-week evidence-based social skills intervention for motivated young adults, who are interested in learning ways to help make and keep friends. During each group session, young adults are taught important social skills and practice these skills in session while receiving individualized coaching from a team of clinical staff and peer social coaches. Parent participation is a crucial component of the PEERS® program. Parents will be taught to be effective social coaches, aid in homework completion, support opportunities for peer interaction, and give guidance on interpersonal problem-solving. This will contribute to their young adult's ability to develop and sustain lasting friendships. Parent groups run concurrent with young adult groups at the same time and location. Parents must attend every session.

Topics of Instruction:

  • How to use appropriate conversational skills
  • How to find common interests by trading information
  • How to appropriately use humor
  • How to enter and exit conversations between peers
  • How to handle rejection, teasing, and bullying
  • How to be a good host during get-togethers
  • How to choose appropriate friends
  • How to be a good sport
  • How to handle arguments and disagreements
  • How to deal with peer pressure
  • Dating skills

Prerequisites for Young Adults:

  • Between the ages of 19 – 29
  • Struggles with friendships
  • Can successfully learn in a small group environment
  • Be able to speak in sentences
  • Motivated to participate in the program
  • Committed to regular attendance


For more information on the PEERS® Social Skill Program including dates, times and locations go to: or call (847) 494-3188. You can also email 
to schedule a phone screening to begin the application process.