Diane L. Williams, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

photo of Diane Williams

Professor and Head, Program Director

Contact Information

308 Ford Building
University Park PA 16802


(fax) 814-865-8133



Ph.D., Bowling Green State University, 1999

Research Interests

My primary area of interest is in language processing, reciprocal communication, social cognition, memory, and learning in autism spectrum disorders using behavioral measures and functional magnetic resonance imaging. My work in this area is interdisciplinary in nature, therefore, I work across the fields of communication sciences and disorders, neurology, psychology, and cognitive science.

Selected Publications

Williams, D.L., Siegel, M., & Mazefsky, C.A. (2017). Problem behaviors in autism spectrum disorder: Association with verbal ability and adapting/coping skills. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders [published online: 08 June 2017] DOI 10.1007/s10803-017-3179-0.

Williams, D.L., Minshew, N.J., Goldstein, G., & Mazefsky, C.A. (2017). Long-term memory in older children/adolescents and adults with autism spectrum disorder. Autism Research, 10, 1523-5132.  DOI: 10.1002/aur.1801

Williams, D. (2016). Problems with auditory comprehension, verbal encoding, and cognitive flexibility in autism spectrum disorders: Insights from neuroscience. eHearsay: Electronic Journal of the Ohio Speech and Hearing Association, 6, 22-33.

Carter, E. J., Hyde, J., Williams, D. L., & Hodgins, J. K. (2016, May). Investigating the Influence of Avatar Facial Characteristics on the Social Behaviors of Children with Autism. In Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 140-151). ACM.

Kana, R.K., Maximo, J.O., Williams, D.L., Keller, T.A., Schipul, S.E., Cherkassky, V.L., Minshew, N.J., & Just, M.A. (2015) Aberrant functioning of the Theory-of-Mind network in children and adolescents with autism. Molecular Autism, 6, 59. DOI 10.1186/s13229-015-0052-x

Williams, D.L., Goldstein, G., & Minshew, N.J. (2015). Further understanding of complex information processing in verbal adolescents and adults with ASD. Autism, 19, 859-867. DOI: 10.1177/1362361315586171

Bodner, K.E., Engelhardt, C.R., Minshew, N.J., & Williams, D.L., (2015). Making inferences: Comprehension of physical causality, intentionality, and emotions in discourse by high-functioning older children, adolescents, and adults with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 45, 2721-2733. DOI: 1007/s10803-015-2436-3

Williams, D.L., Mazefsky, C.A., Walker, J.D., Minshew, N.J., & Goldstein, G. (2014). Association between conceptual reasoning, problem solving, and adaptive ability in high-functioning autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 44, 2908-2920.

Carter, E.J., Williams, D.L., Hodgins, J.K., & Lehman, J.F. (2014). Are children with autism more responsive to animated characters? A study of interactions with humans and human-controlled avatars. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 44, 2475-2485.

Kana, R.K., Liu, Y., Williams, D.L., Keller, T.A., Schipul, S.E., Minshew, N.J., & Just, M.A. (2013). The local, global, and neural aspects of visuospatial processing in autism spectrum disorders. Neuropsychologia, 51, 2995-3003.

Courses Taught

CSD 547 Language Disorders in Children