Pamela Crooke

PhD, CCC-SLP, Chief Strategy Officer

Pamela J. Crooke is the Chief Strategy Officer of Research, Content, Clinical Services and the Director of Social Thinking Training & Speakers Collaborative.

Pam has co-authored, with Michelle Garcia Winner, five award-winning books related to Social Thinking: Socially Curious and Curiously Social, You Are a Social Detective, Social Fortune or Social Fate, Social Town, and their most recent book geared to adults, Social Thinking at Work: Why Should I Care? She and Winner collaborate on writing articles and blogs that appear on the Social Thinking website and in a wide array of publications.


Prior to joining the Social Thinking team in San Jose, she coordinated the Autism interdisciplinary clinical services at the Tucson Alliance for Autism in Tucson, Arizona, served as a clinical and academic faculty member of three universities, and worked in the Arizona public schools for 15 years. Pam is a prolific speaker both here in North America and abroad, giving workshops, presentations, and training staff on Social Thinking. She is on the board and/or is a member of a wide range of organizations related to social thinking and speech-language services, and has been the recipient of several grants and awards related to autism spectrum disorders.


She received her B.S. and M.S. in Speech Pathology/Audiology from Idaho State University and PhD in 1996 from the University of Washington in Seattle.


Treatment efficacy in social and relational therapies for individuals with Asperger's Syndrome and high-functioning autism remains Pam's area of emphasis. Her research-based article documenting the effectiveness of using the Social Thinking vocabulary, "Brief report: Measuring the Effectiveness of Teaching Social Thinking to Children with Asperger Syndrome (AS) and High Functioning Autism (HFA), (Crooke, Hendrix, & Rachman, 2008), was published in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.




Idaho State University
Pocatello, Idaho
1986 Speech
Idaho State University
Pocatello, Idaho
M.S. 1987 Speech/Language Pathology
University of Washington
Seattle, Washington

Language Disorders
Treatment Efficacy


Related Employment

2012 - Current Social Thinking
Chief Officer: Research/Clinical
2009 - Current
Social Thinking
Director: Speakers' Collaborative
2007 - Current
Social Thinking Center
Senior Therapist
2007 - 2012
San Jose State University
2002 - 2007
University of Arizona
Autism Clinic Extension - Coordinator
2000 - 2004
Assessment Associates
Tucson, AZ
Owner/Partner - Private Practice
Autism Consulting/Diagnostics
1992 - 2007

Tucson Unified School District
Tucson, AZ

Co-Coordinator - Autism Program
Autism Diagnostic Team - TUSD
Speech/Language Pathologist


Publications (Books, Articles, Peer Reviewed)

Crooke, P. J., & Olswang, L. (2015-in press). Practice-based Research: Another Pathway for Closing the Research-Practice Gap. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research.

Lee, K. Y. S., Crooke, P. J., Lui, A.L.Y, Kan, P.P.K, Luke, K.L, Mak, Y.M, Cheung, P.M.P, Cheng, L., & Wong, I. (2015). The outcome of a social cognitive training for mainstream adolescents with social communication deficits in a Chinese community, International Journal of Disability, Development and Education, doi:10.1080/1034912X.2015.1065960

Winner, M.G. & Crooke, P. J. (2014). Executive functioning and social pragmatic communication skills: Exploring the threads in our social fabric. Perspectives on Language Learning and Education, Vol. 21 (2), pp. 42-50.

Winner, M. G. & Crooke P.J. (2013). Social Learning and Social Functioning: Social Thinking's Cascade of Social Functioning. Attention Magazine.

Madrigal, S., Winner, M., & Crooke, P, (2012). Social Town Citizens Discover 82 New Unthinkables. Think Social Publishing, Inc., San Jose, CA.

Crooke, P. & Winner, M. (2011) Social Fortune or Social Fate: A social thinking graphic novel map for social learning quest seekers, Think Social Publishing, Inc., San Jose, CA.
Award: (2012) International Book Awards Finalist for Young Adult: Educational

Winner, M. & Crooke, P. (2011). Social Thinking At Work – Why should I care? Think Social Publishing, Inc., San Jose, CA.
(2012) Finalist in “General Self-Help” International Book Awards and
Finalist in the "Best New Self-Help Book" Category

Winner, M. & Crooke, P. (2011). Thinking about Thinking: Social Communication for adolescents with Autism. ASHA Leader Magazine, MD.

Winner, M., Crooke, P, & Madrigal (2010). It’s a Girl Thing or Is it?: Social Thinking and Social Skills in Girls, Teens, and Women with Social Learning Issues, Autism Asperger Digest,

Winner, M. G. & Crooke P. J. (2009). Assessing the Social Mind in Action: The Importance of Informal Dynamic Assessments, Autism News:Education/Therapy, Vol. 5(2), pp. 12-16.

Winner, M. & Crooke, P. (2009). Social Thinking: A Training Paradigm for Professionals and Treatment Approach for Individuals with Social Learning/Social Pragmatic Challenges
Perspectives on Language Learning and Education, 16 62-69

Winner, M. & Crooke, P. (2009). Socially Curious and Curiously Social: A social thinking guidebook for Bright Teens and young adults. Think Social Publishing, San Jose, CA.
(2012) International Book Awards Finalist - Youth Issues
(2012) International Book Awards Winner - Children's/Mind/Body/Spirit

Winner, M.G. & Crooke, P. (2008). You are a social Detective: Explaining social thinking to kids, Think Social Publishing, San Jose, CA.
(2012) Autism Society of America: Literary Excellence Award
(2012) NAPPA Parenting Award
(2012) Mom’s Choice Award

Crooke, P., Hendrix, R., & Rachman, J. (2008). BRIEF REPORT: The effectiveness of teaching social thinking to adolescents with asperger syndrome and high functioning autism. Journal of
Autism and Developmental Disorders
(38) 3.

Kreiymeyer, K., Crooke, P., Drye, C., Egbert, C., & Klein, B. (2000). Observed Outcomes of a co-enrolled Classroom: Teachers’ Perspectives. In Antia, S. and Stinson, M., (Eds.), Inclusive  Education for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students, Volta Review Monographs.

Presentations (2009 - Present)

  • 100+ full day workshops/conferences addressing various Social Thinking topics around various states in the United States
  • International Meeting of Autism Research (2014)
  • Geneva Center (Autism Research)




  • 2009-2015: Social Thinking conferences/workshop topics: Israel, Singapore, Australia, Hong Kong, Canada, Philippines, Malaysia, Argentina, Guatemala, and Spain.




  • American Speech, Language and Hearing Convention Invited Session (2013): Implementation Science: Moving Evidence Into Practice & Giving Practice Evidence
  • American Speech, Language and Hearing Convention (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015)


Crooke, P., Hendrix, R., & Rachman, J. (2008) Teaching Social Thinking to Children with Asperger Syndrome and High Functioning Autism: An Effectiveness Study, Poster Session for California Speech, Language & Hearing Association

Crooke, P., Hendrix, R., & Rachman, J. (2007) Teaching Social Thinking to Children with ASD: An Effectiveness Study, American Speech Language, & Hearing Association National Conference, Boston, Massachusetts.

Crooke, P. (2006) Communication and Social Thinking in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
(Invited Speaker), NSSLHA Regional Conference, Phoenix, Arizona.

Crooke, P. (2005) Facilitating Social Exchanges Using a Peer Template, Poster Session, American Speech, Language, & Hearing Association National Convention, San Diego, California.

Crooke, P. (2004) Talking Template: Structured Peer Interviews with Children Diagnosed with Autism, Poster Session, Arizona Speech and Hearing Association State Convention.


University Courses (Primary Instructor):


University of Arizona: Clinical Instructor - graduate clinical practicum and diagnostics (2002-2007)
Autism Course (2005-2006)

San Jose State University: Clinical Faculty for diagnostics coursework and practicum (2007-2012) and Academic Faculty for Language Disorders (Spring 2011)

Professional/Organizational Activities

  • 2013 - 2014 ASHA Foundation Implementation Science Taskforce
  • 2007 - 2012 Chapel Haven West Advisory Board Member
  • 2007 - Present Teach SOCIAL! Silicon Valley Board Member
  • 2006 - 2010 Vanguard Advisory Board Member
  • 1987 – Present American Speech, Language and Hearing Association (ASHA)
  • 2007 – Present California Speech, Language and Hearing Association (CaSHA)
  • 2007 – Present Santa Clara County Speech, Language Hearing Association (SccSLHA)
  • 1990 – Present Autism Society –National (ASA)
  • 2003 – 2007 Arizona Speech, Language and Hearing Association (ArSHA)
  • 2004 - 2007 Tucson Alliance for Autism Board Member


Grant/Foundation Activities & Awards:

  • California Speech, Language and Hearing Association (CSHA), District 4 – Outstanding Achievement Co-recipient with Michelle Garcia Winner, 2011
  • Crooke, P. & Jacques, N. (2008) Special Hope Foundation; Social Thinking in the Schools ($50,000)
  • Crooke, P. (2005-present) Tucson Alliance for Autism – Anonymous Donor ($100,000 annually)
  • Crooke, P. (2007) The WEST Grant for Children with Autism ($8500)
  • Crooke, P. (2005) Alltel Grant for Infusing Art into Educating Children with Autism ($1500)
  • Crooke, P. (2004) Volpe Fund for Children with Asperger Syndrome ($10,000).
  • Crooke, P. (2003). Providing Education for Children with Autism and Related Communication Disorders. Robidoux Foundation ($20,000).
  • Crooke, P. & Tucker, C. (1999-2002) Educational and Communicative Interventions for Children with Autism. Robidoux Foundation ($3000/year).
  • Tom Jenkins Award for Outstanding Clinical Service to Individuals with Autism – October 2005.

Financial Disclosure

Financial: Pamela Crooke is employed by Think Social Publishing, Inc. as an author/speaker and receives compensation for her presentations. She is also employed by the Social Thinking clinic as a therapist. She receives no royalties for her books or publications.

Non-financial: No relevant non-financial relationship exists.

Honors & Awards

  • Outstanding Achievement Award, California Speech- Language-Hearing Association (CSHA)

    Outstanding Achievement Award, California Speech- Language-Hearing Association (CSHA)

    California Speech, Language and Hearing Association (CSHA), District 4 – Outstanding Achievement Award to Dr. Pamela Crooke and Michelle Garcia Winner.

  • Tom Jenkins Award Award for Oustanding Clinical Service to Individuals with Autism

    Tom Jenkins Award Award for Oustanding Clinical Service to Individuals with Autism

    Dr. Pamela Crooke received the Tom Jenkins Award for Outstanding Clinical Service to Individuals with Autism – October 2005.

Course Expertise

Social Thinking Across the Home and School Day: The ILAUGH Model (ages 5 - young adult)

Discover an array of concepts and strategies that bolster social learning and help students meet socially based educational standards. Explore the ILAUGH Model of Social Cognition to help break down and make sense of the social world. Uncover how challenges in social communication, executive functioning, and perspective taking impact written expression, reading comprehension of literature, organizational skills, and working in a group—and learn strategies to help individuals improve in each of the above! Rounding out the day: learn essential tips for effective IEP goal writing and data keeping. The information taught in this course was developed to help students with social learning challenges, but teachers tell us all students in their classroom benefit from learning these concepts.

The Informal Dynamic Assessment and Core Treatment Strategies (ages 5 - young adult)

Delve into the mind of a person with social learning challenges! Our Social Thinking Informal Dynamic Assessment includes four unique assessment tasks, shown through video, to uncover how individuals process and respond to social information in real time. Then, learn strategies to improve social competencies to use in treatment plans and/or at home. Finally, explore two core Social Thinking frameworks and strategies for use at home and school: Social Behavior Mapping and the Friendship Pyramid and related ideas for expanding treatment using these tools.

Implementing Social Thinking Concepts and Vocabulary: A Day to Develop Team Creativity (ages 5 - young adult)

Learn more than 20 Social Thinking strategies and three core treatment frameworks to guide individuals to better attend, interpret, problem solve, and respond to social information. Help individuals 1) observe and respond to situations based on the context and determine the “expected” behaviors of each situation, 2) learn core Social Thinking Vocabulary and concepts to encourage social-communicative competence, and 3) discover strategies for teaching self-regulation, executive functioning, emotional understanding, and theory of mind/perspective taking. Work in teams to develop lesson plans to implement new strategies in the home, clinic, or classroom the very next day. People love this hands-on, engaging course!

To Infinity and Beyond: Preparing Adolescents to Launch into the Real World (ages 11 - young adult)

Adolescence is a complicated time, and it doesn’t help that the social rules continue to change and become more nuanced as we age. Some students are willing learners while others appear resistant to helping themselves. What’s a parent or professional to do? This course translates peer-reviewed published research on adolescent psychology, motivation, self-awareness, cognitive behavioral treatment, social learning challenges, acquiring independence, and more into hands-on strategies, clear frameworks, and concepts you can use immediately. Taking into consideration that the adult world focuses on access rather than success, we’ll explore job coaching strategies for literal-minded students, strategies for becoming more independent, and how interventionists can help prepare our persistently self-protective/resistant students. We’ll also share successful strategies for guiding our more sophisticated students in developing their own public relations and self-management campaigns. This course is packed with information!

Let’s Get Real: Tackling Dilemmas Faced by Adults with Social Learning Challenges (ages 14 - mature adult)

This course is specifically designed to address the needs of adults with social learning challenges who have solid to high language and learning skills to figure out the more nuanced hidden expectations of the work setting. Providing logical tools to make sense of the abstract social world, we focus on strategies to encourage flexible thinking, spontaneous perspective taking, and the role of emotions in meetings as well as when networking with peers—and more. Explore case studies to teach specific concepts and watch video of adults discussing the treatment process. Anxiety, depression, and inflexible thinking and their relationship to social learning will also be explored along with related treatment strategies. This is a compelling and important course!

ZOOMING IN: Strategies for Concrete Learners (ages 5 - young adult)

Using video from treatment sessions, we zoom in on strategies to promote social attention and perspective taking (theory of mind) with students who interpret language very literally and struggle to interpret what others think and feel. These more literal-minded students—who may have a diagnosis of high functioning autism, ADHD, ASD, and/or sensory integration challenges—are slow to learn social skills and exhibit a range of other learning challenges related to their weak socially based critical thinking. Video-based case studies will guide how this type of student evolves in their understanding of the social world as they grow up to help illuminate treatment ideas. Audience members will receive checklists to help differentiate types of social learners and how social learning connects to the educational standards. Group treatment ideas for different age groups will also be introduced. Audience members appreciate the practical information shared across the day!

ZOOMING IN: Strategies for Individuals with Subtle but Significant Social Problems (ages 5 - young adult)

Explore the needs of nuance-challenged social communicators who may have diagnoses such as Asperger’s syndrome, ASD, ADHD, and social anxiety as well as traits such as perfectionism, being oppositional, etc. Usually in mainstream classes, these individuals struggle with the intricacies of developing social relationships, working through assignments, and engaging in peer-based groups. Learn how even a slight impairment in flexible thinking, emotional understanding of self and others, problem solving, self-advocacy, and nuanced social interpretations can contribute to subtle but significant social challenges. Explore related treatment strategies while also learning tips to motivate students to participate in treatment activities encouraging development of executive functioning, perspective taking, and emotion management!

Social Thinking Meets RTI and PBS: Social Thinking as a School Wide Systems Approach (pre-k - high schoolers)

This presentation explores the implementation of the Social Thinking Methodology in a school setting already utilizing RTI, PBIS, or other initiatives. Designed to address the diverse learning needs of all students, this course explores how Social Thinking concepts can be integrated into the core curriculum to increase compliance with educational standards. Learn how teaching Social Thinking concepts enhances student learning at the benchmark level, while decreasing behavioral and discipline referrals at the strategic and intensive levels.

Social Detective, Superflex®, and Friends Take On Social-Emotional Learning (ages 5 - 14)

You've asked for this course! Learn how to teach the award-winning You Are a Social Detective! and Superflex curriculum to boost social awareness and self-regulation. We’ll explain the critical scope and sequencing required to teach these materials with fidelity and improve social competencies. These books are designed for elementary school children, but we’ll explain how to modify them for use with older kids. Lessons support Social and Emotional Learning programs (SEL), Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), and Response to Intervention (RTI). Interactive, creative group activities abound in this conference! Ultimately, learn how to encourage generalization and social learning for a lifetime.

Master Class 1: Exploring Key Social Communication Concepts Through Hands-on Activities (kinder - young adult)

Our master class designed for those familiar with Social Thinking’s core teachings who want to explore hands-on activities for promoting social competencies. Explore the Cascade of Social Thinking and learn how to enhance our students’ social learning by focusing their social attention. Use our observation-based tool to develop a deeper knowledge of treatment needs, consider social interpretation and response, and improve functioning for those with social learning challenges. Video will be used to support teaching strategies, including longitudinal observation of individuals over a 10- to 20-year span. Plus, get tips on IEP goal writing and connecting information to educational standards. This course gets fantastic reviews and routinely sells out around the country!

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Recent Articles

Stand UP with Social Thinking: 12 Strategies Teaching Physical Movement as Part of Face-to-Face Communication

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner and Dr. Pamela Crooke

For many of our clients, living independently (i.e. functioning without ongoing assistance and flexibly responding to daily demands) doesn’t just happen. We’ve developed a strategy based framework called the 10 Levels to Living Independently to help kids and young adults practice 10 essential independence skills before they venture out on their own.

Read More

10 Levels to Living Independently

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner and Dr. Pamela Crooke

For many of our clients, living independently (i.e. functioning without ongoing assistance and flexibly responding to daily demands) doesn’t just happen. We’ve developed a strategy based framework called the 10 Levels to Living Independently to help kids and young adults practice 10 essential independence skills before they venture out on their own.

Read More

Social Thinking’s Social Competency Model: Attend-Interpret-Problem Solve-Respond

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner, MA CCC-SLP, Founder of Social Thinking and Pamela Crooke, PhD CCC-SLP

The Social Competency Model helps interventionists—parents, teachers, therapists, counselors, and others—understand what it means to teach social competencies. It’s so much more than teaching social skills.

Read More

Think QuAD: A Free-Range Therapist’s Guide to Fidelity and Social Thinking

Author(s): Pamela Crooke, PhD

Pamela Crooke, PhD, CCC-SLP, Chief Strategy Officer describes what should be considered to teach the Social Thinking Methodology with fidelity. To help you teach our curricula with fidelity, we’re in the process of creating fidelity checklists - one page teaching guidelines - for each Social Thinking curriculum.

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9 Strategies to Encourage Generalization of Social Thinking® Concepts and Related Social Skills

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner and Dr. Pamela Crooke

Our goal within treatment is to increase overall social competencies, and not to address, per se, a list of specific skills for specific situations (e.g., sharing toys at home or asking questions during an outing). By focusing on social competency, we are teaching individuals that their own understanding travels with them from place to place. The following is an outline of how to engage in a social learning process that includes and naturally fosters “generalization” across people, time and space.

Read More

Social Thinking® in the Landscape of Evidence-Based Practices

Author(s): Pamela Crooke and Michelle Garcia Winner

Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) is a term that is now commonplace amongst educators, therapeutic professionals, and parents. Rightly so-we all want evidence for our actions! But what exactly does the phrase "evidence-based" mean in the context of our practices? Where did it come from and how does it relate to the Social Thinking® methodology?

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DOs and DON'Ts for Working with Students in Social Thinking® Groups

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke

As we travel around the country, people are often interested in what we recommend as the “DOs and DON’Ts” related to Social Thinking philosophy and treatment. We start out by saying: be flexible! Be an observer, be supportive, be present! It turns out that what we teach our students and clients is sound advice for us as well.

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Updates on Social Thinking’s Cascade of Social Attention: A Conceptual Framework to Explore a Systems Approach to Social-Communication

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner and Dr. Pamela Crooke

As interventionists (parents and professionals) who are seeking to develop meaningful treatment programs for teaching social skills, it’s helpful for us to consider key aspects of the social learning system, starting with one of its main drivers: social attention. The Cascade of Social Attention helps us take a systems approach to exploring social communication and related anxieties while also helping us observe that different students pay attention in different ways to different things - and therefore have different learning needs.

Read More

The Social Thinking-­Social Communication Profile™ - Levels of the Social Mind

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner, Pamela Crooke and Stephanie Madrigal

Joe, a six-year-old boy with Asperger Syndrome and a passion for chemistry, was a client in our clinical practice. His amazingly sophisticated vocabulary and language skills were a reflection of his strong intelligence, measured to be in the superior range. While a number of Joe’s academic skills were quite high when compared to his developmental age, he presented with complex deficits in his ability to relate to others, especially his peers.

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10 DOs and DON'Ts for Teaching Superflex

Author(s): Pamela Crooke and Michelle Garcia Winner

Superflex® has become super-popular! We have enjoyed hearing from so many people around the world about their love of Superflex and the Team of Unthinkables and Thinkables and the positive effect the Superflex curriculum has on helping individuals become better social thinkers and social problem solvers!

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A How To Guide for Measuring Social Thinking Progress

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke

Whenever we talk about the complexities of data collection, questions arise such as: What do we do with insurance companies who only want to see numbers and scores? How do we work within our school district's policy for showing data? How do we write goals and objectives that comply with the academic standards, but still reflect the social learning needs of the student?

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Adults and Being Social: We're all a Work in Progress!

Author(s): Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke

Here's the bottom line: The general public expects adults who do not manifest obvious social skills problems to use good social skills at work and in the community.

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