A systematic review and meta-analysis were utilised to explore the methodological quality, program fidelity, and efficacy of social skills group programs (SSGPs) aiming to support autistic adolescents in navigating their everyday social worlds. The study evaluated the methodological quality and theoretical fidelity of studies, with a random effect meta-analysis conducted to summarise the overall efficacy of SSGP and its effect on social communication and interaction, behavioural/emotional challenges, adaptive functioning, and autism characteristics. Although findings from the 18 identified studies indicated an adjusted medium overall effect with these programs successfully supporting autistic adolescents' socialisation needs (g = 0. 60, p < 0.001), most studies demonstrated medium to low program fidelity despite their good methodological quality. Given the significant heterogeneity of SSGPs and variations in the design and measurement frameworks of efficacy studies, understanding the generalisability of the findings of this research is unclear.
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