Emotion Recognition in Autism

Recognition in Children with Autism Numerous of studies have been conducted with Autism Spectrum disorder, probably the most common research conducted with autism Is emotion recognition. Most autistic individuals, especially children, have trouble recognizing others’ emotions. Most of these researches that have been conducted have used the six basic emotions. The research article I chose “The ‘Reading the Mind in Films’ Task: Complex Emotion and Mental State Recognition in Children with and without Autism

Spectrum Conditions”, researches into emotion recognition of complex emotions and mental states. Researches predicted that children with autism will have difficulty recognizing complex emotions and mental states In social contexts, compared to children without autism (Gallon O, Baron-Cohen S.. Gallon Y. , 2008). Researchers also wanted to look into why autistic individuals have difficulty with this, and two theories were predicted; the weak central coherence theory and the mind-blindness/empathy theory.

The weak central coherence theory suggests autistic individuals have a particular recapture-cognitive processing style, which Is a limited ability to understand or interpret the full context (Baron-Cohen S. , 1989). Antennas van Lang (2003) explains how some people diagnosed with autism can show remarkable ability in subjects like math and engineering, yet have trouble with language skills and tend to live in an isolated social world. This is because autistic individuals do not see or interpret the whole picture, they are perceiving and taking in each detail.

ATA Firth, a leading developmental psychologist, did more in depth research with weak central coherence heron; she hypothesized that children with autism actually perceive details better than normal people (Baron-Cohen S. , 1989). My autistic brother Michael, really enjoys watching television, and one of his favorite shows use to be Sponge Squarest. He watched so many episodes numerous of times, that he was able to say the exact title of the episode and the next episode by the little show-tune that would play along with the title.

Not only that he was able to repeat the entire episode word by word and not miss a line. When I would ask him what the episode was about, he would tart repeating what the characters said and not give me a summary of the episode. He was able to perceive the episode detail by detail, and pick up little things that none of my other younger siblings could, but when It came to understanding or interpreting what the episode (the whole picture) was about, he could not do it. Just like the weak central coherence theory explains, he does not interpret the whole picture, because he Is overly focused on perceiving the details.

The second theory discussed In the article Is the mind-blindness theory. This theory can be described as a cognitive disorder where an individual is unable to attribute mental states to the self and other; as a result of this disorder the individual is unaware of others mental states (Baron-Cohen S. , 2001). This difficulty autistic individuals have with understanding others thoughts and reactions, lead many people to think (or still think) that autistic people lack empathy. When really It Is not a lack of empathy, It Is a lack of understanding that outlasts Individuals have. F beliefs and desires, that the beliefs and desires stem from expectations of an individual, those with mind-blindness are unable to generate expectations and redirect behaviors (Baron-Cohen S. 2001). According to Baron-Cohen (2001), this ability to develop a mental awareness of what is in the mind of an individual is known as the theory of mind. Children are able to point out or seek these mental states within them self and others, autistic children are delayed in this. Developing children without autism are able to put themselves into someone else’s shoes, to imagine their thoughts and feelings.

Autistic children often cannot conceptualize, understand, or predict emotional states in other people (Baron-Cohen, 2001). When I went to diddle school and high school with my brother Michael, I was able to see and observe how he interacted outside our house in a social context. He rarely socialized with anyone; when I would see him, he was usually by himself and what seemed to be like his own world. I would have some of my guy friends go up to Michael and try to talk to him, see if he would want to hang out with them.

I could see how uncomfortable and awkward Michael and my friends felt, so I stopped pursuing that. It was as if he did not understand that they were trying to be nice and friendly with him. Sadly to say, but sometimes the people he did try to socialize with, were the ones that would take advantage of him, make fun of him or steal his lunch. I always wondered why Michael could not tell the difference between someone being nice to him and someone picking on him, could he not pick up on their behaviors.

Well that is exactly it, he could not read their mental states; He would eventually notice if someone was picking on him or being nice to him, but it took longer than it would have for other without autism to notice it. These two theories tie into why individuals with autism have difficulty with motion recognition. In the weak central coherence theory, autistic individuals have trouble with emotion recognition because they do not interpret or understand the full context; they are trying to break it down or perceive all the details.

In the mind- blindness theory, autistic individuals have difficulty with emotion recognition because they are unaware of others mental states. If an autistic individual is in a social setting, they are probably not even aware of the people around them. Their attention is probably focused on taking in all the details of the area or setting, and if omen approaches them they are not too sure how to react because they are unaware of what the other person’s mental state.

An autistic person having to process all of this in simultaneously can get overwhelming and it is easy to see how recognizing some other’s emotion can be difficult. It is nice to notice the public awareness and outreach programs for autism have grown so much throughout the years. Cognitive and developmental psychologists are finding out more about autism than ever before, and hopefully it continues on to answer the unsolved puzzles with autism and other similar disorders.

Educating Special Needs Students

In addition to the above mentioned, he essay will identify areas of curriculum, necessary for students with severe disabilities and will explain why. Addressed also will be the following; using the authors’ local school dulcet, Lass Vegas Nevada, an Investigation Into the polices, procedures, and programs for the education, of students with Mental Retardation, Autism, and or Severe Multiple Disabilities. Lastly, an explanation of how these policies, programs, and procedures, either address or ignore the area of curriculum, the author has listed within the content of the essay.

According to the Association for Retarded Citizens or (MAR), Mental Retardation is defined as; a disability characterized by significant limitations both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior as expressed in conceptual, social, and practical adaptive skills. Though its causes can be attributed to a variable amount of many things, here are just a few of known caused medical factors; Genetic conditions, which have been the results from abnormalities of genes inherited from one or both parents, errors when genes combine, or from other disorders of the genes caused during pregnancy by

Infections, overexposure to x-rays and other factors. Problems during pregnancy, some of these problems, In the opinion of the author, are definitely avoidable such as; the use of alcohol or drugs by the pregnant mother which can cause mental retardation. Other problems exist too such as, Malnutrition, rubella, glandular disorders and diabetes, and stegosauruses. Many of these types of illnesses can be traced back to the mother and often times in the early trimester of the pregnancy.

Another of these causes is Poverty and cultural deprivation, in which children in poor implies may become mentally retarded because of malnutrition, disease-producing conditions, and inadequate medical care. This brings us to one of “the most” controversial topics of late; “Autism”. It is defined as; a mental condition, present from early childhood, characterized by great difficulty In communicating and forming relationships, a mental condition in which fantasy dominates over reality, as a symptom of schizophrenia and other disorders. The causes of this disability are still up for debate however. He Autism Society of America (AS) defines it as the urine the first three years of life and is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the normal functioning of the brain, impacting development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills. ” The causes of this disability are attributed to the following; Depot, also called Palpitate, an anti-seizure medication, taken during pregnancy, Fragile X syndrome, a genetic disorder, Ret syndrome, a genetic disorder affecting only females, Tuberous sclerosis, a rare genetic disorder and Parade-Will syndrome, a rare genetic disorder.

Lastly defined are Severe Disabilities and Multiple Disabilities, those who traditionally have been labeled, as having severe to profound cognitive impairments or intellectual disabilities. It is difficult to define this term precisely because, during the authors’ research, there is no one clear definition that; covers all the conditions that special educators and psychologists know about this disability. So, what is the impact of disabilities on the education of students with mental retardation?

Well compared to their peers, most students with severe and multiple capabilities learn more slowly, forget more readily, and experience problems generalizing skills from situation to situation. This makes educating students with this particular disability more challenging and often times harder to manage. “The public education of these students must start early and continue at some level throughout life. Second, all students typically need speech and language intervention, while many others will need physical and occupational therapy.

Students with sensory impairments may need interpreters and mobility trainers, while some with medical needs may require nursing services or supervision. Third, because the educational teams of students are often large, close collaboration between members is essential if their expertise is to result in improved student functioning. The benefits of integrating therapy into natural activities are now being widely accepted over the traditional practice of isolated, or pull-out, therapy. ” The essay will now turn its focus to the attention of identifying areas of curriculum, necessary for students with severe disabilities and will explain why.

To begin, the Handicapped Children’s Act of 1975, federal emphasis shifted from curriculum development to preparing and implementing individualized educational programs for students with disabilities (Money, 1996). Why, because in the opinion of the author, every student in every state deserves to have the best available education the Department of Education has out there also, with the use of modern technology there is no obstacle to hard to overcome. The following statement illustrates the authors’ point. Students with complex healthcare issues, significant developmental delays, ND severe multiple disabilities require approaches that offer intensive levels of support. Students who are blind, deaf, deaf-blind, and autistic may in some cases require the same degree of support, but they also require more specialized curriculum and teaching approaches (in, for example, technology and literacy). Additionally, such students may require specialized resources from related service providers (such as orientation and mobility instructors or audiologists). The National Center on Accessible Instructional Material. In the conclusion of this essay, using the authors’ local school district, Lass Vegas Nevada, an investigation into the policies, Autism, and or Severe Multiple Disabilities, and an explanation of how these policies, programs, and procedures, either address or ignore the area of curriculum, the author has listed within the content of the essay. According to Charlene Green, a teacher in the Nevada Clark County School district, she’s seen the number of children with autism spectrum disorders in her charge increase from 96 to more than 1,000.

Green, the associate superintendent for student support services in the Lass Vegas- area district, oversees those children’s education–an expensive, complicated task. Moreover she says, “The school system was at a nadir in dealing with the needs of its autistic children and their parents. “We were being bombarded with due process requests,” she says, by parents who sought legal recourse against a school system they believed wasn’t providing the necessary education for their children, as schools are required to do under the 1990 Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Educating students with Mental Retardation; While the author has lived in the city of Lass Vegas for over eight years now, there is no clear Policy, nor procedure in which the author could find to answer this question, to his surprise the list below was researched and readily available; Lass Vegas, Nevada Courses – Regis University- Colorado college … , Special needs Jobs in Lass Vegas, NV I career]et. Com, Special education Jobs in Lass Vegas, NV I career]et. Com and this list Just goes on from here.

But under the Department of Education in Nevada it reads as follows; Nevada Department of Education Office of Special Education, Elementary and Secondary Education, and School Improvement Programs; Under federal and state law, each student with a disability is entitled to receive a free appropriate public education (PAPA). Special education programs in Nevada serve students with identified disabilities in one of the twelve categories established in Nevada Revised Statutes, Chapter 388.

School districts must provide the services necessary to assure PAPA for all students with disabilities, without regard to the adequacy of state revenues to support the costs. In closing and in the opinion of the author, “we”, this means everyone who works in the educational industry as a Teacher, Principle, or Administrator, must focus on all available data to, not only include but, to educate every student no matter what the disability.

Detecting Autism Early in Children

Did you know that health officials are trying to implement a plan that will recommend all physicians look for signs of autism in children 18 to 24 months? This can be a great benefit for those families that have children with this disorder. Children with autism can show certain symptoms of the disorder very early In life. There are many deferent levels to this disorder that sometimes can be confused with slow development, but in fact are due to the disorder of autism.

Parents and pediatricians need to be aware of the signs and symptoms of autism In order to get he earliest diagnosis possible. Children diagnosed with autism early In life, often have a better chance of coping with their dillydally, then those children diagnosed later In life. Autism has been around for a very long time but was not officially a diagnosis until the turn to the 20th century. There Is evidence that suggests that autism has been around for thousands of years, but the people of that time associated disabilities with signs of evil or unholy beings, and many of the children were abandoned and left to die.

These happened primarily because people did not understand the disorder, and were more apt to think that there was something religiously wrong with these small children so they were deemed evil. Later, in the sass there were schools for children with disabilities, but most focused on blind and deaf children. By the turn of the 20th century the word autism was used but was often associated with schizophrenia. By the middle of the century a doctor named Leo Canner was the first physician to use the term autism as it known today (Encyclopedia of Global Health, Autism, pig 9).

When autism was first brought to the attention of doctors, it was thought to be caused by the parent’s lack of love and neglect. These parents were often told by the doctors to seek professional help for their parenting skills, so most parents did not have their children checked out by physicians for fear that they would be labeled bad parents. The result of this behavior was that many children were not properly diagnosed, and more than likely lived their lives as uneducated dependents of their parents.

In the sass, only 10% of the parents who took their children in for help were given an immediate diagnosis of autism. One fourth of the parents were told that they had nothing to worry about, and another 10% were told to Just wait and see how the child develops (Encyclopedia of Global Health, Autism, pig. 10). This was due mostly because medical personnel did not thoroughly understand the signs and correct diagnosis of this disorder. If the medical personnel knew some of the things that they know today, many more children would have been diagnosed and treatment started early on.

One of the mall reasons for the misdiagnosis or the neglect to diagnose was because autism was so often ruled out to be Just slow development. Since children each have different personalities and abilities, they can all develop at different ages, so misdiagnosis Is possible, and Is often missed due to the range of development stages. Doctors and specialists are still learning about this disorder, but there Is a list of symptoms that help In determining a correct diagnosis of autism. Some of these symptoms include: lack of speech before age 2, hand flapping, body rocking, facial grimaces, and grunting or growling.

One third of autistic children will never children are often thought to be deaf, because they are unusually quiet and don’t develop age appropriate speech. Some may throw tantrums and fits, because of the lack of ability to communicate their feelings and wants. Autism has other spectrums of the disorder which include espaliers. Espaliers is a form or autism that affects the motor skills and its prevalence is 1 in 300 children (Encyclopedia of Global Health, Autism, pig. 6). Although espaliers is a form or autism, children with espaliers develop normally with no language delays or any other kind of communication issues.

They do, however, show signs of motor skill difficulties, often clumsy and not coordinated. A person with espaliers will tend to talk a lot, especially about a abject they are very interested in, and sometimes can talk for hours at a time about this subject. Like others with autism, an individual with espaliers will seldom make eye contact, and at times can make inappropriate facial expressions. Individuals with espaliers don’t usually make or keep many friends, and they tend to primarily stick to people who share similar interests.

One good trait of a person with espaliers is that they are not one to break rules, so they normally tend to be a good, upstanding person. They can normally live a long productive life, when taught to how to deal tit their disability. Another type of autism is Ret Syndrome, which has a prevalence ratio of 1 in 15,000, and is a genetic disorder, but has similar behaviors to autism (Encyclopedia of Health, Autism, pig. 7). Although it has similar behaviors to autism, ret syndrome is distinctly different in that this disorder is genetic and is linked too gene defect.

The individual, like others with autism, start to develop normally, but by 6 to 8 months of age, they tend to lose all the acquired abilities. They lose the ability to talk, walk, and eventually they will lose all ambulatory ability. Most individuals with ret syndrome become mentally impaired and develop strong communication issues. A person that is diagnosed with autism or one of the other spectrums of the disorder early on in life, preferably at infancy, has a better chance of learning to live with their disorder.

Everyday there are new details and developments on this disorder which is helping doctors know what they are dealing with, and how to help those individuals diagnosed with autism. In order to correctly diagnose a person with autism, there has to be an accurate developmental history one on the individual, to see if they demonstrate any of the behavior typical of autism. Health experts are advising all doctors to look for early signs of autism in all children they see (The Journal of the American Medical Association, December 2007, p. 2610).

The most important suggestion is to screen all children 18 to 24 months of age. They are trying to make it a requirement and not Just because a parent has a concern. The Academy of Pediatrics feels the new guidelines could help physicians diagnose these children early, so that treatment can be administered as quickly as possible. An adult that has been diagnosed and treatment administered to, can have a range of outcomes from very little speech and poor living skills to being able to excel in college and function individually in society. ( Dutchmen REF, Rapid, Pediatrics, 1997).

Ongoing research shows that the earlier the treatment is started, the better. “The brain is the most plastic early in life,” said Andy Shih, PhD, Vice President of Scientific Affairs, at Autism Speaks. There is still a lot to learn about autism. Although there is no cure or miracle medication with intensive remedial education may live a normal life. It is now known that having a child with the disorder of autism is not the fault of the parent, although parents are still encouraged to seek counseling to help with dealing with a child with this disorder.

It is important that these parents watch for the signs and know that the earlier the disorder is detected and diagnosed the faster treatment can be started. This is not always easy because the signs of this disorder are sometimes confused with slow development, but if the medical personnel responsible for your child’s well being also checks for the signs the chances are better that the child will be diagnosed early and treatment started. Children diagnosed with autism early in life, often have a better chance of coping with their disability, then those children diagnosed later in life.

Children with Autism in School

Imagine your child is healthy and active little boy about two years old. But then you become concerned because your child doesn’t seem to be doing what other children his age are doing. He doesn’t talk much but he will repeat words that he hears and will say them over and over again. But he does not communicate with you very well. Maybe your child spends a lot of time playing by himself, focusing himself on Just a few favorite toys. Could be cars or it could be dinosaurs anything that assassinates him.

Then you become even more concerned as he starts to throw tantrum over the smallest thing or If his normal routine has been changed in the smallest way. It may often seem that your child don’t even care If you are there and this can become stressful for any parent or family member to deal with. So finally with some advice from a family doctor you take your child In to see an Early Intervention specialist. Your child is then evaluated and diagnosed with Autism. This is what many families face. Finding out their child has autism. It is a painful thing to learn about our child because you love him and want him to have normal life.

But by getting an early diagnosis you can get your child early treatment and they will have the best chance to grow and develop. The road ahead will be long but you will know that you are not alone and you are getting your child the help he needs. Autism is a developmental disability that significantly affects a student’s verbal and nonverbal communication, social Interaction, and educational performance. (Turnbuckle 302). In the paragraphs below I will address five characteristics, needs and accommodations FAA child with autism In school. First of all I would Like to address five characteristics of a child with autism.

Each individual with an autism spectrum disorder (SAD) is unique and may demonstrate markedly different behaviors and skills. But there are some common characteristics in children with SAD. First there is speech. Students with autism have a broad range of language abilities, ranging from no verbal communication to quite complex communication (Males et al. , 2003; National Research Council, 2001 (Turnbuckle 302) Speech is likely to develop much more slowly than is the norm. Speech may remain absent, or appear in the small child and vanish by the age of four.

Speech may include peculiar patterns or intonations. Just like the little boy I once had in preschool. Before starting preschool his mother said that when he was two he had a very large vocabulary. He would talk and communicate with people and It was Like all that had vanished overnight. Another characteristic of a child with autism Is the social Interaction. Individuals with autism do not understand that their own beliefs, desires, and intentions may differ from those of others (Baron-Cohen, 2001; Baron- he most noticeable is the failure to form social bonds.

A child who has SAD may not follow the parents or other children around the house – or may cling to them. He may not go to others for comfort when hurt. An autistic child often avoids eye contact, resists being picked up, and does not seem to “tune in” to the world around him/her. A third characteristic of a child with SAD is playtime. A child who has SAD will most likely not initiate play with other children that are around them. He or she may prefer to be left alone. They also will not imitate other children or adult’s action like other hillier may do. Another characteristic of children with SAD is sensory differences.

Children and youth with autism and Aspirer syndrome frequently experience sensory and movement disorders related to taste/smell, tactile sensitivity, visual/ auditory sensitivity, and energy levels (Radioman ; Pastiest, 2006; Rogers, Hepburn, ; Whiner, 2003). (Turnbuckle 306) A child with SAD may not react the same way to a variety of stimuli. He may or may not respond to cold or heat and if he did respond he would over-respond. Children with SAD may also show hypersensitivity to light, noises, touch, smells and taste. Finally the last characteristic of a child with autism is a need for routine.

A child with SAD may throw a tantrum that last for hours because the seating was change in the family room. Or they may engage in behavior such as flapping a hand, lining toys or drawing the same picture to do in the place of what he is unable to do at the time. Children with SAD are all different but they all have needs to be addressed. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some form of autism affects 2 – 6 of every 1,000 children, with the most recent autistic being 1 in 110. (CDC. 009) With this many children being affected by autism there is definitely needs to be addressed in school. The first need of an autistic child is the need for routine. As this is one of the common characteristics of a child with SAD it can also be seen as a need. The autistic child needs to live in and see a set routine that they can count on every day. In the absence of this routine, an autistic child may respond with a bad behavior. Children with a set routine will know what to expect and they will be able to function better and go through the day without to many interruptions.

Another need to be addressed is to look for the best education suit the child’s need. There are many programs that are out there that are available to help children out. Preschool intervention programs offer special courses for autistic children who are not old enough to go to school yet. These are early intervention programs that get the child ready to the point that they are ready to enter into school when it is time. Experts in the field of autism agree that as soon as a child is diagnosed, he or she should immediately be enrolled in an early intervention preschool program (Green, Brenna & Vein, 2002; Hurt, et al. 999; National Research Council, 2001) Another need is that the child with autism needs to be accepted. Rather than focusing on how your autistic child is different from other children practice acceptance. Enjoy your kid’s special quirks, celebrate small successes, and stop comparing your child to others. Feeling unconditionally loved and accepted will help your child more than anything else. If your child with SAD learns a new word you need to celebrate it. Autistic children are special but they also need to feel as though they have been accepted by their family and friends.

A fourth aren’t you need to know what it is that sets of the over stimulation to the child. If these things are know it is easier to identify them and avoid a meltdown. Children with SAD have many issues dealing with sensory and when they are over stimulated it causes chaos with the child. A final need for a child with autism in school is an open line of communication between the home and the school. An autistic child needs all the adults in their life working together to provide a safe and learning environment for the child.

The parents need to know what is going on at school and the teachers need to know what is going on at home. Many children with SAD can function quite well in school if the parents and the teachers are well prepared to help the child out. With a few slight modifications in the classroom it can be easily accommodated for a child with SAD. The first accommodation could be to develop and use visuals for learning. One great visual to use would be an individual visual schedule. This could be made by poster boards and index card.

Each task of the day is written on an index card and laminated. Or the task could be illustrated. As each task for the day has been completed they move the task for the chart to an envelope ext to the chart to indicate that it has been finished. Another accommodation that could take place in the classroom would be to give the student a choice and control. But they are not really in control. You are providing the choices for them. They feel as though they have control because they are getting to choose between one thing and another.

For example you could ask the child if they would like to color with crayons or marker. Then they are getting to choose what they are coloring with but you are limiting their possibility. A third accommodation would be to adapt the physical environment to exclude distractions whether they are auditory or visual. Children with SAD are sensitive to loud sound or bright elite. If they are over stimulated they will become frustrated and act out often ending in tantrums. They should be seated in the classroom within close proximity to materials and instructions.

There needs to be boundaries set for them. They need to know what is expected of them and what appropriate behavior is. Another good accommodation for the student with SAD would be to provide peer support or a buddy system throughout the day. This could be a child in the classroom that is on the older end of all his peers. Maybe one that seems a little more mature can help out. They would assist the autistic child with social interaction. As I stated earlier one of the common characteristic is social interaction and the child may not interact with others.

The peer could also provide support for the child with autism. This could easily be incorporated into the class room. It does not call for anything extra to be done. It is simply Just using resources you already have on hand. Finally the last accommodation would be to provide activities to teach and support social and emotional skills. These would be the areas hat a child with SAD would struggle the most. Social skill development should be a priority for the student the first day they enter into school whether they start out in preschool or they start in kindergarten.

Social skills not only help students with SAD but it helps all students in all aspects of their daily life. From childhood to adulthood they should be taught in the school environment. These could be simple activities such as playing games with each other or working on a project together. These things could promote social interaction and social skills. Early diagnosis and intervention dents with SAD focus on improving communication, social, academic, behavioral, and daily living skills. Behavioral problems are a big issue with students with SAD.

It interferes with learning and will require assistance of someone who is knowledgeable in the field of autism. This person will help develop a plan that is to be carried out at home and school. Classrooms should be structured so that it is consistent for the student with SAD to learn better. Interaction with other peers is important because they can provide a model of what is important and appropriate behavior. References Baron-Cohen, S. , Gallon, 0. Wheelwright, S. , & Hill, J. J. (2004). Mind reading: The interactive guide to emotions. London: Jessica Kinsley Limited.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (2009). Autism spectrum disorders: Data and statistics. Retrieved from: www. CDC. Got/inched/autism/data. HTML Green, G. , Brenna, L. C. , Vein, D. (2002). Intensive behavioral treatment for a toddler at high risk for autism. Behavior Modification Males, B. S. , Huggins, A. , Rome-Lake, M. , Hegira, T. , Baronial, G. P. , & Griswold, D. E. (2003). Written language profile of children and youth with Aspirer syndrome: From research to practice. Education and Training in Developmental Disabilities, 38(4), 362-369.

National Research Council. (2001). Educating children with autism. Committee on Educational Interventions for Children with Autism, Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education. Washington, DC: National Academy Press. Radioman, M. , & Pastiest, F. (2006). Discrimination in autism within different sensory modalities. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 36, 665-675. Turnbuckle, Ann, Urdu Turnbuckle and Michael L. Hemmer. Exceptional Lives: Special Education in Today’s Schools, 6th Edition. Pearson Learning Solutions. ;VBG:

Causes of Autism

Nowadays, the exactly cause of autism still is unknown. Yet, based on the research, those factors of autism include genetic, some category of infection and the problem appear at birth. Recently research report show that the conditions for autism susceptibility may from parents to children. For some children, environmental factors might also one of the factors of autism. Findings of autism have discovered that autism will influence the early stage of brain growth or in the womb of the mother.

In the parts of viral infection during pregnancy, viral infection also will lead to autism for the child. Viruses have been suspecting as immune-mediated could lead to autism such as multiple sclerosis and diseases. In environmental factors, researchers are searching the factors of viral infections or during pregnancy will triggering autism. Undoubtedly, the chemical exposure also is one of the reason will cause to autism, the heavy metals such as mercury, pesticides and other contaminants will also easier affect the childhood development.

On other autism theories, the Immunity system could produce antibodies that might invasion children’s brain and lead to autism. Furthermore, In the early stage of rain growth, autism’s children will grow faster than normal children but in the future, normal children’s brain will grow faster than autism’s children. The some factors of autism Is from the disease, In the childhood stage, vaccines might cause autism, especially the measles, mumps or rubella but those Information have not been proven. Most Important are give children to gets all the safely childhood vaccines.

Apart from this, opiate drugs also will affect the child become autism, for Instance, opium, morphine and heroin. Those opiate drugs are very strong and having a deeply attention to affect children’s health and lead to autism. Last but not the least, In genetics aspect, autism have the highly probability to heritable. In our findings, a family that have a child with autism means that the family might have a chance of having a second child with autism, and the percentage which Is 1 per 20 means that It Is 20 percent chance of having autism.

According to the National Institutes of Health. That Is a higher risk than In the general population. Furthermore, If those children are twins, according to research found that If one win has autism, the other twin are 90 percent chance of having the disorder. Based on our findings, women who are 35-year-old or older having 30 percent chance greater than women who are 25 to 29 years old of having an autism child. Omen who are 40-year-old having 50 percent change of having a child with autism than a women about 20 to 29 years old. By attenuate On other autism theories, the immunity system could produce antibodies that might invasion children’s brain and lead to autism. Furthermore, in the early stage of The some factors of autism is from the disease, in the childhood stage, vaccines sight cause autism, especially the measles, mumps or rubella but those information have not been proven.

Case Study of Child with Autism

Rationale and Strategy I became Increasingly Interested In Autism since I had the opportunity to work alongside kids with Autism this summer. Seeing how their minds worked and how they processed information was astounding to me. Ever since this experience, I have fallen in love with children with Autism and I am always thriving to learn more about them. With this being said, I am looking to do my research on a child with Autism. I will be looking into the question how does Autism affect language development in children? Under this broad topic I will be specifically looking into why their pragmatic engage is impaired.

To find my information I will interview my child’s parents. I will do my own observations both In the home and at school. Finally, I will research scholarly articles that are based off of good scientific research in my subject field. I want to become more informed about children with Autism and why their language development is impaired in the ways that it is. In doing so, I feel that I can become a more Informed teacher which I can use to my advantage In my classroom. I will know how to make children with Autism that are In my class successful both In class and In social situations. Section 2: Research

Article #1 Measuring Pragmatic Language in Speakers with Autism Spectrum Disorders: Comparing the Children’s Communication Checklist-?2 and the Test of Pragmatic Language “1 in 165 children” (Phillips, Evolved 2010, p. 204). The number of children that are prevalent with some type of Autism Spectrum Disorder (SAD) as stated by Joanne Evolved and Linda Phillips. It is a statistic that is on the rise and highly debated. It is a statistic that greatly affects classrooms across the nation. And yet, how to we help these children to the best of our abilities? An aspect that Is being highly overlooked Is pragmatic impairments.

Children with an SAD have a greater chance of having a pragmatic dysfunction than do typical’ children (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 205). How do we help children that are having these Issues? How do we even diagnose these types of Language Development Impairments? This article points to two of the ways this is being done: The Test of Pragmatic Language and The Children’s Communication Checklist – 2. This article examines the validity of two tests: The Test 2) (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 205). Each test was made to identify “pragmatic impairments” in children with high functioning SAD (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 05). The study identifies the difficulties that children with SAD have with pragmatic language -these children have “peculiar and out of place (communication) in ordinary conversation” (Router, 1965, p. 41); may “fail to develop (a) topic by contributing new, relevant information” among other minor things (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 204). Each test was developed to measure pragmatic dysfunctions in children so they may receive the support needed to thrive in everyday life. “Pragmatic language has proven (to be) difficult to assess… Because) the (general) structure of formal testing procedures fails to capture flexible adjustment to changing resistances” (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 205). The TOP test “samples a range of typically developing pragmatic behaviors” (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 205). The test compares students that have typical development pragmatic skills and students that have been diagnosed with high functioning SAD. The ICC-2, on the other hand is “designed to screen for clinically significant communication problem of any type and (identifies) pragmatic language impairments” (Phillips, Evolved, 2010 p. 205-206).

So while the ICC-2 does test of pragmatic language impairments it also screens for communication impairments as well. The TOP test is scored using a summary score called the “Language Quotient” (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 207). The Language Quotient is expressed as a “standard score with a mean of 100 (SD = 1 5) (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 207). According to Phillips and Evolved, Language Quotients of “7()-79 are interpreted as poor, and quotients below 70 are interpreted as very poor” (2010, p. 207). The cutoff score indicating a pragmatic impairment in the child was designated as 79 (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 07). The ICC-2 on the other hand derives two composite scores that are interpreted allowing for a greater variety of information to be processed and taken into account while interpreting whether or not a child with high functioning SAD has pragmatic issues or not. These two composite scores are the ICC that is expressed by a standard score “with a mean of 100 (SD = 15) and the SIDE (Phillips, voided, 2010, p. 207). If a ICC score less than 80, it indicated a communicative impairment: not a pragmatic impairment (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 207). On the other hand, a negative SIDE score represents a pragmatic issue. If the SIDE score is -15 or below Bishop (2003) suggests that pragmatic language impairment is present regardless of the ICC score (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 207). So what does all of this mean? It was shown that both tests can in fact show whether or not a child with high functioning SAD has an issue with pragmatics. But how valid are these tests? Both tests ended with different results. The TOP test showed that “9 out of 16 students with SAD were pragmatically impaired” while the ICC-2 identified “13 out of the 16” (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 08). While it is known that students with SAD do in fact have pragmatic impairments is there a chance that not every student will have this type of impairment? It is hard to ell what test was more reliable in this situation for biases and cultural considerations were not taken into effect. However, it is a start. The article states that “the ICC-2 would be better at identification because the test included items designated to tap a broad range of pragmatic symptoms that are frequently reported development” (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 209).

This study does prove to have a lot of vital information in regards to pragmatic dysfunctions in children with high functioning SAD. However, it does say that the study was small: “This study is limited y its small sample size and by restricting participation to those who had structural language scores within typical limits” (Phillips, Evolved, 2010, p. 210). With that being said, it would not be reliable to extrapolate the information from this study to schools across the nation. This study only used children that were diagnosed as high functioning SAD.

It would be important that other studies be done using children across the spectrum to see if the results were reliable. It would also be important to use other students with Intellectual Disabilities or even students that have been armorial diagnosed with a Language Disorder to see how the validity of each test would withstand against these types of children. And although there is a lot that this study could have done further to prove their point, the information is still interesting and conclusive in its own regard. It is important that these types of tests continue to grow and evolve in our everyday world.

If these tests can further prove to diagnose students with pragmatic impairments, it would be incredible in the world of teaching. Students with pragmatic impairments are being over looked and swept under the rug cause they are not diagnosed as atypical in this aspect of Language Development. And while not all children with high functioning SAD have pragmatic impairments, there are large numbers of children that do exhibit these dysfunctions. As teachers, it is vital that these children, diagnosed with SAD or not, get the necessary treatment plans and resources to allow them to excel.

Whether that be through an PIPE or 504 plan, students need not be ignored because there is not a way to formally diagnose their language dysfunction. And while this article does state that the ICC-2 may be he better route to diagnose these children, it is important to use either the ICC-2 or the TOP test rather than nothing at all as a start to diagnose a child. Once a child is assessed and diagnosed not only will that child be able to learn in the school setting but in the home setting as well.

For although it may not always be good to label a child, having that label will allow for the child to have adequate and necessary treatment to allow for further success. Pragmatic dysfunctions, when treated early, can make a large impact on a child’s life. Growing up to know when the right time is o say certain things can be essential when trying to obtain a Job or Just talking in public. As teachers, these language issue needs to be taken into account more often and more seriously. Children are slipping through the cracks because teachers are uneducated as to how to formally diagnose and help these issues.

Article #2 Brief Report: Pragmatic Language in Autism Spectrum Disorder: Relationships in Measures of Ability and Disability Pragmatic language is something that we use on a day to day basis whether we know it or not. Talking to a single person, talking to a group, or even listening to another arson talk is all included in pragmatic language skills. Children, especially children with Autism, often lack pragmatic language. Children with Autism generally have could even be diagnosed as having a pragmatic language dysfunction.

Their speech is often considered “peculiar and out of place in ordinary conversations” and “irrelevant” (Bryon, Colonial, Garçon, Evolved, White, 2008, p. 388). “Pragmatics is consistently agreed upon as the domain that is specifically and universally impaired in Autism Spectrum Disorders” (Bryon, Colonial, Garçon, Evolved, White, 2008, p. 388). With this all being said, why is pragmatic language so often pushed to the side? Should pragmatic language be considered an important factor in considering a person’s long-term ability to function effectively in his or her community?

Students with Autism may or may not have structural language difficulties paired with pragmatic language difficulties as well. Do structural language difficulties predict pragmatic language difficulties? This study that was done measured the “contributions of nonverbal cognitive and structural language skills to the prediction of pragmatic language scores” (Bryon, Colonial, Garçon, Evolved, White, 2008, p. 91). The study was done on “37 children aged 6-13 years who met the criteria of Autism/ SAD” (Bryon, Colonial, Garçon, Evolved, White, 2008, p. 389).

This study showed that pragmatic language, as measured by the TOP, is strongly related to, but not dictated by, structural language. Structural language plays a part in pragmatic language, but it is not the driving force behind it. A student with Autism may have nearly perfect structural language but lack pragmatic language. Whereas another student may lack structural language and pragmatic language. Every student is different. These results imply state that structural language and pragmatic language are related in some way. How they are related, however, was not stated.

The study also shows, as predicted, that if a child has better pragmatic skills, they were linked to fewer SAD communicative symptoms. Better pragmatic language was also linked to fewer symptoms in the social domain. These findings underscores how central the theme is between SAD symptoms and social communication. This study, done mostly on children with High-functioning Autism, increases the evidence that children with Autism cannot help the way that they act in social settings. They cannot help that they can’t hold a conversation, among other things.

Children with Autism are different: in a good way. Although they may not be able to communicate effectively and appropriately, they are so good at so many different things. Communication Just happens to not necessarily be one of those things. This study has its flaws. The study should not be extrapolated to large groups, although the results are informative and interesting. The study was only done on a small sample size. The children that were selected “functioned within normal limits on most measures” (Bryon, Colonial, Garçon, Evolved, White, 2008, p. 92). Having a larger sample size with children of different functions’ will prove to be more effective in showing the same results, assuming they will come out the same way. So, what is the point of this study? It can be stated that students with SAD have pragmatic language difficulties. It can be stated that students with SAD have structural language difficulties. It can be stated that these are intertwined within one another. But what does this all mean in the life of the child? How can this information better the life of a student wit SAD?

The study suggests the importance of developing a “comprehensive (assessment) of pragmatic engage to help document a person’s level of disability’ (Bryon, Colonial, Garçon, intervene in functional, community based contexts so students can develop social skills needed across all domains. Students will be able to grow individually to further their importance in their community. Should pragmatic language be considered an important factor in considering a person’s long-term ability to function effectively in his or her community? With the information given, all signs point to yes.

Pragmatic language is an essential part in a student’s life. It allows students to function in everyday social situations. Students that lack pragmatic language are set back because of their inability to function ‘normally. “It stands at the intersection of language and social skills, impairments central to defining features of SAD” (Bryon, Colonial, Garçon, Evolved, White, 2008, p. 391). Article # 3: Diagnostic Differences of Autism Spectrum Disorder s and Pragmatic Language Impairment Children with Autism are generally associated with having pragmatic language impairments.

However, not all children that have pragmatic language impairments have Autism. So, along with difficulty in social communication settings, what else do Hess children have in common? Do children with Autism get labeled as having a pragmatic language impairments because they actually have a pragmatic language impairment or do their Autism symptoms overlap with those of pragmatic language impairments? Do children with Autism and children with pragmatic language impairments show comparable levels of behaviors associated with the ‘autism triad’ (Cornish, Forefront, & Resisting, 2011, p. 701)? The study sought out to answer these questions. The Autism triad is composed of three components. Component one involved the social and emotional aspect of development. Children with Autism in this area will have trouble with making friends, managing unstructured parts of the day, and working co-operatively. The second component is language and communication. Children with Autism will have difficulties in this area including difficulties understanding Jokes and sarcasm, social use of language, literal interpretations, and body language and facial expressions.

Finally, the third and final component of the Autism triad is flexibility of thought (imagination). In this area, children will struggle with coping with changes in routine and empathy. The study as done with “forty-one children with communication impairments aged 7-15 years” (Cornish, Forefront, & Resisting, 2011, p. 1696). Each child was tested using both the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (DADOS) and Social Communication Questionnaire (SAC). The purpose of these tests was to compare the scores of children with SAD and children with FLIP.

These tests would then show whether the children have comparable levels of behaviors associated with the autism triad. The diagnostic cut-off scores of each test were examined and measured. Overall, the results from the DADOS and SAC showed that children with FLIP have less severe impairments related to the autism triad as compared to children with SAD. However, the sub domains of these tests could not always differentiate between children with FLIP and children with SAD in reference to their scores. When the combined measures with SAD that show signs of FLIP. Cases could not be differentiated (Cornish, Forefront, & Resisting, 2011, p. 1701). Therefore, it was concluded that using DADOS and SAC alone were not strong predictors in differentiating between SAD and FLIP. This study then goes on to support the theory that there are subtle differences between SAD and FLIP. Children with FLIP have “significant difficulties socializing” (Cornish, Forefront, & Resisting, 2011, p. 1702). Because of these difficulties, children with FLIP have an increased risk for problem behaviors related to Autism.

The difficulties that these children have in relation to their solicitation lead to an increased risk of frustration and anxiety, and in turn “an increase in expression of abnormal behaviors” (Cornish, Forefront, & Resisting, 2011, p. 1702). This same relationship was not found in children with SAD. This may be due to the fact that children with SAD lack a sense of awareness of their surroundings and do not allow heir surroundings to get to them in the way that children with FLIP may. This is not true, however, of all children with SAD. This study examined children with SAD that were not diagnosed in having FLIP.

Children that are combed with SAD and FLIP will experience the frustration, the anxiety, and the increased behaviors. Even some children that have SAD but not FLIP could essentially still show these frustrations in social contexts. Looking back at the Autism triad after reading this article, children with FLIP and children with SAD really only share equal difficulties in one area: engage and communication. And not to say that this will always be what is shared amongst these two different diagnoses, but this is what will be most common amongst the two.

The overlapping symptoms does not mean that children who have been diagnosed with FLIP should also be diagnosed with SAD, but rather that they share common characteristics about their speech and communication, especially in Article #4 An Exploration of Causes of Non-Literal Language Problems in Individuals with Aspirer Syndrome It is known that children with Autism show difficulties in pragmatic language. “One f the key features characteristic of individuals with high functioning Autism is a marked disruption to the ability to engage in social communication” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 11). The question that is never brought up, however, is why these children are at an increased risk for having pragmatic language difficulties. Article after article, case study after case study all talk about the signs and symptoms of pragmatic language impairments (FLIP) in children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (SAD). They talk about how to test for FLIP and intervention techniques that can prove to be beneficial for the child. This article explores what others do not: the why of pragmatic language.

Knowing the cause of pragmatic language impairments in children should essentially lead to potential remedies to help treat children that are affected. There are two competing hypotheses that are correlated with pragmatic deficits. The first is Theory of Mind (TOM). This may be “the most prominent position on the causation of social communication in SAD” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 311). States, and, furthermore, to use those representations to understand predict, and judge others’ utterances and behavior” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 12).

The ability to infer mental states of another individual is pivotal in engaging in effective pragmatic communication. “Deficits in TOM have been observed in individuals with SAD across a range of age groups and IQ ability’ (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 312). The comprehension of non-literal language relies on a person’s TOM capacity. Therefore, children with SAD who have difficulty understanding metaphors or irony in another person’s speech could essentially blame their lack of TOM. With a lack of TOM, children will not be able to communicate effectively with another person.

Their beech will be egocentric and will lack empathy. The second hypothesis that is correlated with pragmatic deficits seen in children with SAD is the notion of weak central coherence (WAC). WAC is not as strong of a thesis as TOM is. WAC refers to how language is processed. It’s argued that, according to the WAC theory, “language is processed in a kind of fragmented isolation without reference to the social context in which it occurs” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 312). In accordance with WAC, children with SAD display difficulties when they interpret words according to the context of the sentence given.

WAC predicts that individuals with Autism should be impaired in their ability to achieve local linguistic coherence” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 313). Children with Autism are also less able to “draw coherence inferences, or themes across, a set of statements” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 313). While these two theories are seemingly informational and reliable, their validity is questionable. Therefore, a study was performed to establish validity among the two theories. “The primary aim of this study was to compare the competing theories of social interference” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 15). Two predictions were made about TOM and WAC: “If deficits in TOM underlie pragmatic ability, then deficits in social interference should be significantly associated with deficits in pragmatic ability. However, impairments in social inference making should not be associated with either general inference ability, or the ability to integrate perceptual information. If WAC underlies pragmatic ability, then the ability to organize perceptual details into meaningful wholes should be significantly associated with the ability to make pragmatic inferences.

Furthermore, this ability should be related to the capacity to make mineral and social inferences, as both these abilities require the capacity of drawing together disparate sources of information to infer meaning” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 315). The results showed that “students with SAD were found to be impaired on both the mental inference questions and the non-mental control inference questions” (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 325). Therefore, their difficulty with TOM reasoning extended from one activity to the next, whereas WAC was only seen a small portion of the activities performed.

WAC was assessed and found to not be related to pragmatic engage ability. However, this study was done solely on testing children on processing visual-spatial information. It is unclear and not studied whether WAC with pragmatic communication (Martin & McDonald, 2004, p. 326). More research, of course, would have to be done to replicate the information done in this study. This small sample size that was used has limited power in showing the true difference between the two competing theories that are TOM and WAC.

Furthermore, with more research, it could be shown what other types of language deficits are applicable using these explanations. Article #5: The Social Communication Intervention Project: A randomized controlled trial of the effectiveness of speech and language therapy for school-age children who have pragmatic and social communication problems with or without autism spectrum disorder There has recently been a strong push to increase language therapy for students with Pragmatic Language Impairments (FLIP).

Pragmatic language is an underexploited field that has increasing numbers of diagnoses year to year. No real therapy is implemented in school systems for children that have FLIP. “There is little robust evidence of effectiveness of speech-language interventions which target the engage, pragmatic or social communication needs of these children” (Adams, Earl, Freed, Eaglet, Green, Law, Location, Mclean, Nash, & Vail, 2012, p 233). This study aimed to assess the effectiveness of one particular type of language therapy aimed at children with FLIP with or without Autism Spectrum Disorder.

The aims of the study at hand were to “examine the effectiveness of an intensive analyzed social communication speech and language intervention in improving language skills and observed pragmatic ability’ (Adams, Earl, Freed, Eaglet, Green, Law, Location, Mclean, Nash, & Vail, 2012, p 233). The study that was performed was a small-scale randomized controlled trial. The trial was aimed to compare the effects of Social Communication Intervention (SHIP) compared with treatment as usual (TAO) on a standardized language assessment. Children either received SHIP intervention or TAUT intervention.

The results then showed what type of intervention was more effective for children with FLIP. Participants that received SHIP ceased all other intervention programs when they began this formal intervention program. Children that were receiving SHIP sat down for “16 to 20 individual face-to-face one hour sessions of intervention in school over the course of one school term” (Adams, Earl, Freed, Eaglet, Green, Law, Location, Mclean, Nash, & Vail, 2012, p 236). Each child received an individualized intervention strategy that was derived from a manual as to ensure that intervention was consistent amongst all participants.

Two specialist speech and language therapists and five specially trained therapy assistants delivered the experimental treatment. Children that received TAUT continued with their regular/typical treatment that was being provided by their local speech and language therapy services. After the children had finished their intervention treatment plan for their pragmatic language impairment, they took the CLEF-4 to measure their general language ability. The participants also took a secondary Conversation (TOPIC). The outcomes of the CLEF-4 along with secondary measures did not show a significant intervention effect for SHIP compared with TAO.

The article does state, however, that “the overall conclusion provided in SHIP is effective at improving overall conversational quality in 6-11 year olds who have significant pragmatic and social communication needs compared with TAO” (Adams, Earl, Freed, Eaglet, Green, Law, Location, Mclean, Nash, & Vail, 2012, p 242). These conclusions do not match the evidence that the study provides, however. This may be due to the fact that the children that were selected for this individualized intervention program were so diverse in their backgrounds and diagnoses.

This sample was also small. Providing more research with a more consistent group may show results more of what the study intended. The amount of therapy was also constrained by the study. In reality, some of the children may have needed more or less therapy to achieve maximum potential. Although the results of the study were not consistent with the conclusion, the article does make some good points. More research must be done to show the effects of a structured individualized intervention program for students with FLIP and SAD.

With the increasing numbers of SAD diagnoses, FLIP diagnoses soon too will be on the rise. Children deserve the best possible intervention and therapy needed, so why are children with FLIP getting cut short of this due to lack of research? In the upcoming years, there is sure to be more done on this particular topic to ensure that students will in fact receive the treatment that they need. Section 3: Data Collection I had the opportunity to work with a student that I taught over the summer. ‘A’ is 8 years old and is in third grade. He is an energetic, fun, loving boy.

A has Autism and trouble with his pragmatic language. Although A has never been formally diagnosed with a Pragmatic Language Impairment, it is evident that he shows the signs and symptoms. As discussed in the interview paper, As mother does not want him to be diagnosed with FLIP for she does not want him to have another label on top of the others he already has. As I mentioned, I observed A first over the summer while I aught him at a camp which was for students with Autism and social difficulties. At first, A was a quiet and compliant student for the first week or so.

However, I later found out he was only testing the waters. After A felt comfortable in the classroom, he swore on a regular basis, had social outbursts, never raised his hand, etc. A went from being an angel to one of the most difficult children in the classroom. I was baffled as to what we were supposed to do. On a regular basis, A was talking out of turn and was talking in ways not appropriate for students of his age. I also observed hat A, when talking with a peer, did not allow his peer to engage in a conversation with him. It was a one-sided conversation, all with A talking.

After talking to As mother about our concerns, l, along with my other classroom staff members, came up with a positive behavior plan that A used in his classroom and at home. I distinctly remember As mother telling us that she was so sorry that he was acting the way that we was and that it was probably because he wasn’t in his typical routine. I also remember her telling us that once we put into action this behavior plan that his pragmatic language difficulties would slightly decrease. And, Just like she had him for this, we applauded him for using his words to communicate.

However, we then asked him why he would use the words that he chose and once he calmed down we would ask him if he felt those words were appropriate for the context he used them. We would then brain storm together ideas of words that he could use instead of the swear words (or even inappropriate words). We would then replay the situation and A would use the words that were brainstormed rather than the original words that he chose. Another thing we began to do, not Just with A, but with all of our hillier in our classroom was to use a tennis ball when having a conversation.

We encouraged the children to pass the tennis ball back and forth when they were talking with one another to discourage one sided conversations. We told the children that they should not have the tennis ball the whole time they were talking and that you could only talk for long sentences if you had the tennis ball in your hands. We saw a great improvement not only in As conversations but in the conversations in all of the children as well. Along with my experiences with A over the summer, I got to e A in his classroom this year.

Although I only got to spend a little over two hours with him, I saw a lot of the same techniques used over the summer in his classroom here as well. I think this is because of what his mother said to us over the summer: A does well with a consistent routine. The thing that I found interesting about A in his classroom is that his Therapeutic Support Staff (TTS) was the one who would talk to A if he had an outbreak. I am sure that this is because the teacher does not always have time to sit down and talk to A individually, but I personally feel that it is important to help shape As pragmatic language.

Finally, I observed A in his home as well. I feel that A acts different in his home than in school because he knows how to push his mom and dad’s buttons. They of course use the same techniques in the classroom as they do at home. However, they are more firm with him. They expect a lot out of A. It is extremely evident that they love and care for him and they only want the best for him. That is why they have gone to such extreme measures to make him be as successful as possible in regards to his pragmatic language. (Checklist Attached from Observation)

Section 4 Interview A-?Student Where do you see (student) have the most difficulties with pragmatic language (I. E. In the classroom, at home, out in public)? -We feel that A has the most trouble with his pragmatic language when we are out in public. However, that may be Just because we are more aware of our surroundings at the time. However, it really does depend on the day. When he is out of routine at home we see that he has a lot of trouble with a lot of different things, his pragmatic language being one of them. When did you start to notice that (student) has difficulties with pragmatic language?

Background of the study for autism

Disorder Is distinct from other pervasive developmental disorders such as Retest’s disorder or childhood disintegrative disorder, two other distinctive clinical conditions classified within the spectrum of pervasive developmental disorders. What Are the Symptoms of Autism? Children with autism demonstrate the three core symptoms as described in the ADSM- IV. The symptoms vary according to the severity of the disorder. Qualitative Much current research suggests that the lack of reciprocal social interaction is the primary symptom in autism.

Sometimes this deficit in social relatedness is noticeable during the first months of life; parents may report that their child has poor eye intact, lacks Interest In being held, or stiffens when held. Young children who have autism often do not Initiate or sustain play with their peers and often do not take part In groups. They may lack the ability to Judge appropriate reactions In social situations; they may not feel anxiety around strangers, or not be aware of how close to stand to someone.

As they become adolescents and adults, some children with milder, higher functioning autism may demonstrate relatively normal social interactions, but they still “tend to show a lack of cooperative group play, failure to aka close friendships, and inability to recognize feelings in others or to show deep affection” (News and Having, 1997). Qualitative impairments in communication Research suggests that a significant majority of children with autism are not using language for functional communication at the time of their initial diagnosis.

Earlier studies suggested that about half of all children with autism remain “functionally mute” throughout their lives, although that may be an overestimate given the effectiveness of current Interventions and the broader current definition of autism. Some children with autism Initially develop some language and then show language loss or regression, usually during the second year. Others show significant present in a young child with autism, it tends to be rote, repetitive, and lacking in apparent communicative intent. Certain unique features of language use are especially characteristic of autism.

Children with autism frequently demonstrate calceolaria (rote repetition of what has been heard), confusion of personal pronouns (such as referring to self in second or third person), verbal perspiration (repeating retain phrases over and over or dwelling on a single topic), and abnormalities of prosody (rate, rhythm, inflection, or volume of speech). Children who have autism, particularly when younger, often do not use gestures, such as pointing at objects to show shared interest, shaking their head to indicate yes or no, conveying emotion through facial expression, or engaging in pantomime.

Lack of these types of early nonverbal communication can provide some of the earliest diagnostic evidence for the presence of autism. Restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior, interest, and activities Most young children who have autism will demonstrate repetitive motor or verbal actions. Children may, for example, flap their hands, bang their heads, rock, pace, spin on their feet, or use repetitive finger movements. In some children, these stereotyped behaviors tend to occur primarily when the child is excited, stressed, or upset.

Children with autism also have a tendency to be preoccupied with a small number of activities, interests, or objects. The nature of their play tends to be restricted or repetitive; a child might, for example, prefer to nine up cars in identical patterns rather than to play with the cars imaginatively. Some children with autism demonstrate a “compulsive adherence” (ADSM-IV) to routines or rituals. This behavior may represent the cognitive inflexibility and preference for sameness that characterize the style of most autistic children.

Are There Symptoms Not Included in the ADSM-IV? A number of other common findings in children with autism do not fit easily into the symptoms described above. These symptoms may include: Unusual responses to sensory stimuli: Many children with autism, especially when they are young, are either almost oblivious to sound (such as human voices or their own spoken name) or extremely sensitive to certain sounds, even very soft sounds. The same child can have both kinds of responses to sound.

Children with autism frequently respond in a similar fashion to visual stimuli; they are attracted to some stimuli and distressed by others. These children may also have similar responses to the other sensory stimuli such as touch, texture, taste, smell, or pain. Behavior disturbances: Although not specific to autism, certain behavior patterns are often observed. Especially when they re young, children with autism have difficulty attending to topics or activities that they have not chosen. Some children with autism may be considered hyperactive and some may have significant anxiety.

Some children may respond to minor changes or frustrations with aggressive outbursts, and some children, particularly those with more severe developmental delays, may have problems with self-injurious behaviors such as head-banging or self-biting. Cognitive characteristics: Children with autism who have intelligence quotients over 100 have relative strengths in a number of cognitive areas. Even children who are higher functioning, however, have the tendency to think concretely rather than abstractly or symbolically.

Some children with autism have “splinter skills,” usually involving an aptitude for rote memory or have “savant skills” such as being able to perform complex mental calculations. Is There More Than One Type of Autism? In recent years, the definition of autism has broadened so that autism is now seen as a spectrum disorder. Each case of autism can be placed along a continuum ranging from milder to more severe based on the level of functional skills in areas such as immunization, cognitive abilities, social interactions, etc.

The majority of specialists believe that the boundaries along that continuum are overlapping and indistinct. Others believe that it is possible to define discrete subgroups within the continuum. For example, the term Pervasive Developmental Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified (PDP-NOSE) has been applied in the ADSM-IV to milder cases that do not meet the full criteria for Autistic Disorder. How Common is Autism? Autism may be more common than previously realized, particularly if the broader definition of autism as a spectrum disorder is used to determine the number of asses.

Earlier studies suggested that about three to four children in 10,000 have autism, but more recent studies have suggested higher rates, up to greater than 20 in 10,000. A range of 10-15 per 10,000 is a commonly accepted “middle range” estimate. The higher estimated rates probably reflect inclusion of the broader range of autism, including milder subtypes on the spectrum (PDP-NOSE and Aspirer disorder). The apparent increase may also be a result of improved diagnosis, but a real increase in prevalence cannot be absolutely ruled out.

Current estimates suggest that there are three to four boys for every girl with autism. The ratio of boys to girls is even greater in cases at the milder end of the spectrum. In cases when autism is associated with more severe mental retardation, however, the ratio of boys to girls is lower (Gillian, 1992). What Causes Autism? Many different types of research support the concept that autism is a biologically based developmental disorder.

Various types of investigations including imaging studies, electroencephalographic studies, electrophoresis studies, tissue studies on autopsy material, and neurological studies have demonstrated abnormalities in any cases of autism, although a clear pattern has yet to emerge (Bauer, 1995). Recent research, however, is beginning to suggest possible answers to some pieces of the autism puzzle. Is Autism Associated With Any Other Medical Conditions or Genetic Syndromes?

In some cases, children with autism also have other associated medical conditions or genetic syndromes that are not part of autism but are seen more frequently in children with autism than in the general population. Such associated medical conditions include such things as seizures, muscular dystrophy, and other neurological conditions. Fragile X syndrome is the most common specific genetic disorder that is sometimes associated with the clinical picture of autism. Retest’s disorder, another condition that includes autistic features, is now believed to be a neurological disorder.

Autism and autistic symptoms have also been described in some cases of amorousness’s disorders (especially tuberous sclerosis), metabolic disorders (phenolphthalein, disorders of Purina metabolism), intrauterine infections (rubella, stegosauruses), and a number of other syndromes (Williams syndrome, Niobium syndrome) (Gillian, 1992). Specific diagnostic approaches are discussed in more detail in Chapter Ill. How is Autism Diagnosed? Information about the child’s behavior from the parents and from direct observation of the child.

In the United States, the current criteria for diagnosing autism and other types of pervasive developmental disorders (PDP) are those given in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition (ADSM-IV). In New York State, only licensed physicians and licensed clinical psychologists are authorized to make the formal diagnosis of autism. Establishing a diagnosis is usually only one part of a comprehensive assessment process for a child with possible autism. Recommendations for the appropriate assessment and diagnosis of young children with possible autism are given in Chapter Ill.

That chapter includes specific recommendations for: (1) identification of children with possible autism, (2) establishing a diagnosis, (3) looking for associated developmental and health problems, (4) assessing the child’s overall function in all developmental domains, and (5) assessing the child’s family and environment. Assessing children tit autism can be complex. Some manifestations of autism are also seen in children who do not have autism but have other conditions such as cognitive delays, language disorders, attention deficit and hyperactivity disorders, and various types of emotional problems.

In addition, disorders such as cognitive delays and language problems often coexist with autism. When or How Early Can Autism Be Diagnosed? One of the recent developments in the field of autism is an increasing ability to recognize this disorder at a very early age. In most cases, young children (under the GE of 3) with autism can now be recognized by their difficulties in orienting to social stimuli, diminished social gaze, and impairments in the areas of shared attention and motor imitation that accompany the language delays that are generally present.

It is difficult, however, to make a definitive diagnosis at an early age in some children. It is not yet known with certainty Just how early the diagnosis can be made with high reliability or whether very early diagnosis is as accurate or predictive as later diagnosis. Multiple observations may be required, sometimes over an extended eroded of time, to confirm the diagnosis of autism. Is There a Prenatal Test For Autism? There is no genetic test for autism. There are, however, prenatal biological tests for other conditions sometimes associated with autism, such as Fragile X syndrome.

The fact that autism is now known often to have a genetic component (with recurrence risk in some studies of up to 7% in siblings) offers hope that prenatal diagnosis or screening may someday be possible (Bailey, 1995). Who Can Make the Diagnosis? While the diagnosis of autism may seem fairly apparent in many cases, and many experienced professionals who work with young children may be trained to recognize autism-like behaviors, the practice acts of New York State require that the diagnosis of autism be made only by licensed psychologists and physicians.

What Are the Most Effective Intervention Approaches? The question of intervention approaches is the most difficult question for families to answer, and one that may change over time, both as the child develops and as we learn more. Parents are advised to engage in ongoing discussions of intervention options and approaches regarding the progress and effectiveness of the current intervention(s). This guideline addresses several approaches, including behavioral, detail in Chapter IV.

Are There Any Medications Available for Autism? Most physicians treating children with autism believe the role for medications in autism is quite limited at the present time, especially in young children. Nonetheless, medications have sometimes been helpful in the management of certain specific symptoms associated with autism in some children. None of the available medications, however, can “cure” the symptoms, and none has even had consistently positive effects across large groups of children with autism. Is There a Cure?

Given that autism is a spectrum disorder with a wide range of presentations and no known specific etiology, it seems less likely that any single cure will be found. Over the years, a variety of interventions have shown promise for improving symptoms of autism in some children. What is the Prognosis for Children With Autism? The prognosis for children with autism varies considerably. Traditional estimates suggest that about two-thirds of children diagnosed with autism have an overall poor outcome, as defined by social adjustment, ability to work, and ability to function independently.

However, the more recent broader definitions of autism and PDP include many children with milder symptoms for whom the long-term prognosis may well be better. Currently, the majority of children with autism can be expected to continue to need some degree of assistance as adults. A much smaller group, perhaps 10% of cases, seems to have much better outcomes, and may actually seem to “outgrow” their autism and improve to near “normal” functioning. Some data suggest that intensive behavioral approaches, when started at an early age, significantly improve the outcomes for at least some children with autism.

Awareness on Autism

The importance of Autism research is to get the correct treatment of autism spectrum Disorders. Autism is one of a spectrum of behaviorally defined pervasive developmental disorders, which is referred to as autism spectrum disorder (vim. Minds. Nil. Gob 7/17/15). The deficits In social communication and repetitive behaviors that are lifelong Impairments and disability (what Is autism vim. Halogenated. Com 4/09/15).

Autism affects 1 In 88 children In the united States (YMMV. Wheelies. Com/how do I become an autism specialist 8/1 8/15). Environmental forces. There are no medical tests a physician administers to diagnose autism. An accurate diagnosis is based on the parent and a doctor to observe the individuals communication, their activities and interests and also social interaction the patient has with other people (wry. Hallucination. Com what us autism 4/09/15). There are many similar behaviors associated with autism that are also common to some other disorders.

Pediatricians, Neurologists and child psychiatrists administer and diagnose the patient as having autism. A doctor will complete medical assessment test since there is no behavioral or communication test that can detect autism. There are several screening instruments that are used in diagnosing autism. To prepare yourself to be working with autistic patients you first need to gather as much information as possible about the patient. There are a lot of things that a doctor or any person in the medical field that will be seeing the autistic patient deeds to consider.

Try to also make the factors that go into if the autistic patient needs to be hospitalized. Make hospital trips with the patient if they need to go into the hospital for tests or screenings. Limit the number of physicians and medical assistants or any other medically involved person to care for this autistic person. Have a family be with the autistic patient while visiting the doctor for everything. It makes them feel more comfortable knowing someone is there with them. Autistic patients also like the same setting, they don’t like change at all.

Try to have the patient I the same examination room for all visits and checkups. If they see familiar things they will feel more welcome to the environment. Autistic patients remember certain things like familiar faces, familiar places and also certain things that are in the office. They also remember a lot of things like where certain stuff is located. It’s a lot to prepare for an autistic patient especially when there are so many different autistic diagnosis.

Autism: There Is Hope

Nobody ever dreams or hopes to have a child with Autism, so when that unexpected day arrives with the devastating news that no parent wants to receive, it an seem like there is nothing a parent can do and that they are utterly alone. This In fact is not true, once getting a firm understanding of what Autism is a parent can then research and focus on the resources available to them and then come to the realization that they are In fact not alone and that they are their own biggest Autism Is a disorder of brain function that can be Identified with resource. Robbers in physical touching, how the brain functions, language skills or lack of, and abnormal responses to environment (Blanched, Longer, & Turning, 2002-2006, p. 419). Autism, which is also referred to as Autism Spectrum Disorder (SAD), is a lifelong disorder that interferes with the ability to understand what is seen, heard, and touched. When referring to “spectrums” it means that SAD affects each individual in different ways, with more mild or more severe symptoms.

The “Autism Speaks” (2013) website states that Autism Spectrum Disorders include autistic disorder, Ret syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDP-NOSE) and Aspirer syndrome and states that these autism subtypes will be merged Into one umbrella diagnosis of SAD. A child that Is diagnosed with Autism has a long road ahead of them; they will have to learn how to interact and deal with other people, objects, and events along with learning how to communicate normally.

In most cases, Autism is diagnosed in the early years of life, but some cases of Autism in children are not diagnosed until they start school. Signs of Autism in a child include, but are not limited to, not responding to their name, poor eye contact, prefers to play alone, not speaking or having delayed speech, repeating phrases or words, without having an understanding of them, constant and appetitive movements, and have strange food preferences, like eating few foods or wanting to eat things that are not food, such as chalk or dirt.

More often than not it is the parents that notice that their child is showing abnormal behavior and bring It to the attention of their child’s pediatrician. Currently, there are no medical tests that can diagnose Autism. There Is however specially trained physicians and psychologists that can administer behavioral evaluations that are designed for autism. As of right now Autism has no cure, but with early detection and treatment, a Even though a parent can feel totally alone, there are online resources they can utilize to better cope with the stress of raising a child with Autism. One such resource site is, The Autism Society.

According to “Autism Society” (2013), they are the nation’s leading grassroots Autism organization, and they exist to improve the lives of all affected by Autism (About Us). The Autism Society provides awareness, advocates for services, and provides current up-to-date information on treatments, education, research and advocacy. Here parents can navigate the site to find information on Autism, look up events held in their area, read stories from other parents about their triumphs and hardships, connect with other parents that are experiencing the same things, and look up current news on Autism.

Another helpful online resource for parents is, Autism Now. According to “Autism Now” (2013), they provide resources and information for individuals with Autism and other developmental disabilities and their families (About Us). On this site parents can find information on early detection and intervention, how to cope with a child in school and out in the community, learn hat to expect from their autistic child throughout their life span, and what they can do to help spread the word about Autism to the public.

Another online resource for parents to use is, Autism Speaks. According to “Autism Speaks” (2013), they were founded in February 2005 and are dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism, increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders, and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families (Para. 1). This site provides family resources, applications to use with n autistic child, a resource guide by states, list of local and national events being held, and many other useful resources.

What all of these sites have in common is that they all provide information that parents desperately need to fully understand what Autism is and how they can help their child live a full and productive life in the community. There are numerous online resources available for parents to utilize; they Just have to do some researching to find all that are available and then do even more research to decide if these online resources are ones that will work for them ND their child. A parent’s main resource is themselves. As a parent, they will always have the most number of hours with their child and the most invested in their future.

By working with their child’s therapists and counselors, a parent will learn how to communicate with their child and to carry on their therapy and treatments at home. According to the Committee on Educational Interventions for Children with Autism and National Research Council Staff (2001), Parents’ use of effective teaching methods, support from within the family and the community, and access to balanced information about autistic spectrum disorders and the range of appropriate services can contribute to successful child and family functioning (p. ). One such therapy that a parent can continue at home is speech-language therapy. Speech-language therapy is used to combine the mechanics of speech with the social use of the word and its meaning. Another therapy a parent can and will continue at home is occupational therapy, depending on the child and the severity of the Autism this will involve helping the child to reach age-appropriate independence and helping them o live an active and full life by focusing on appropriate play and leisure skills along with learning and self-care skills.

Physical therapy is another that will be continued at time with sitting, walking, Jumping, and running. Parents will also learn that sensory therapy will become a large part of their lives because knowing the proper techniques will not only help calm a child with Autism who has become over stimulated but also reinforce good behavior and help with transitioning from one activity to another. One of the main things a parent will learn is structure, a set Truckee will help their child to develop and grow to their full potential.

Over time, a parent will start to feel like their child’s in-home teacher and therapist, supporting not only their autistic child but also educating family members and friends that have contact with their child on a daily basis, in doing this the parents are creating a pool of resources for them to dip into whenever the need arises. Autism can be a scary, confusing, and difficult condition to deal with, not Just for the child but for the parents as well. With the many classifications and different conditions that come with Autism it can feel like a daunting task for a parent to deal with.

It may take years for parents to come to a point where they feel that they somewhat understand what Autism is and how it can be handled and treated. By doing their own in-depth research, working with their child’s teachers, counselors, therapists and their network of family and friends, plus utilizing the resources they discover online and in the community that are available to them, a parent can gain a wealth of knowledge and tools to use while raising and teaching their autistic child. References About Us I Autism NOW Center I National Initiative of the Arc. N. D. ).

Autism: theories and perspectives

Autism: theories and perspectives. I will, In this essay, demonstrate my understanding of the key needs of people with an Autism Spectrum Condition (SAC) and will use my own experience as a support worker in Adult Services working with adults with an SAC. I will reference relevant quotes in support of my knowledge of SAC and I will concentrate on the needs of people with an SAC in relation to triad of impairments (L Wing 1996), diagnostic criteria and psychological functioning (V Cuming et al 1998).

I have decided to refer to he Autism Spectrum as a condition (SAC) rather than a disorder (SAD) to follow the social rather than medical mode (Autism Act 2009). SAC can be defined as a “lifelong complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and affect the way a person communicates and relates to people. ” (O Bashing 2006) The condition is pervasive; it affects every aspect of a person’s life and being. A person with an SAC may comprehend the world in a very different way to a person who has developed typically and the world at large is designed for typically developed people.

The challenge therefore Is to find a way for a person with an SAC to develop and adapt too very confusing world. “Tome, the outside world Is a confusing mass of sights and sounds. It is totally baffling and incomprehensible. ” (Ross Blackburn 2000) Mimesis and She (1996) describe autism as being a “culture” and that those who work with to educate or support people with an SAC to be “cultural interpreters”; they must have an in depth knowledge of the culture of autism as well as the knowledge of the confusing typical world. Each person with an SAC is a unique Individual and Is as different to the next person with n SAC as you and l.

The condition Is shaped by their personality as well as environmental stimulus and as a support worker I consider how a world I take for granted must seem so chaotic and unpredictable for the people with SAC whom I support. Current understanding concludes that autism has organic causes and is not a result (as was once believed) to be a result of bad parenting! It is a condition which is present during the lifetime of the person and as such has no “cure”. It affects all areas of the person’s life and for a formal diagnosis to be made the person with an

Sac must have Impairments In the three areas of the triad (L Wing 1996): ; Communication, including absence of desire to communicate with others, calceolaria and repetitive speech, communication confined to expression of needs only, factual comments and a distortion of the rules of language ; Social understanding, including difficulty in Interpreting the signals connected to social interaction and a difficulty in learning the Intricacies that govern social behavior ;Rigidity of thought and behavior, Including difficulties In coping with a change, generally concepts and managing the future For a diagnosis to be made a person with an SAC needs to have impairments in all three areas of the triad (L Wing 1996). Once a diagnosis has been made it is important to understand the psychological functioning of the person with SAC so that their needs are being meet.

The observable behavior is obvious but we need to know how the person comprehends the world. We need to know how the person processes Information, how they perceive things to be, how they experience psychological functioning and thus each approach to diagnosis and care/education will need to be individual to meet the person’s needs. In my own experience as a support worker to adults with an SAC, I agree with the idea that autism is a transactional condition; the relationship that a person with autism forms with other people and how they communicate is affected by the condition. Each person that I have worked with has had a unique support package, but one that has had a sound basis on the principles of autism.

The challenges come with adapting the environment and how we communicate with the person to meet their needs. I am particularly drawn to the “Autism Checklist” as described by Donna Williams. She lists areas which impact on the person with an SAC: – ; Sensory perceptual issues and sensory hypo/hypersensitivities. How does the person sense stimulus in their environment? ; Language processing and the presentation of language. Presence of any combed conditions The background of the person. For example, has the diagnosis of autism led to lack of promotion of independence? ; The support “tool bag”. What are the strategies in place to support the person with an SAC when their ability to process language or exert self-control has been impeded?

There are a number of psychological theories which help to explain the behaviors of people with an SAC. It must be noted that these theories are only beneficial if they consider the behavior characteristics that mark out the autism spectrum from other conditions and those who have developed in a typical way Gordon 1999). The Theory of Mind (Attwood 2006) construct explains the difficulties that someone with an SAC has with comprehending the mental state of another person in relation to their own mental state, in other words the person with an SAC may find it difficult to accept that another person may have a different understanding about a piece of information.

I experience this with someone I support who starts asking me about an event that happened to a family member but finds it difficult to accept that I don’t know who or what he is talking about as I wasn’t present when the event happened. The theory of Executive Functioning (Cuming et al 1998) explains the difficulties that people with an SAC have with organization, planning, controlling their reactions to environmental stimulus and problem solving. As a support worker I have witnessed the effects of executive functioning deficiency and how it affects the behavior of someone with an SAC creating a difficulty in organizational skills and inflexibility to cope with a change or problem.

The Weak Central Coherence theory (Cuming et al 1998) supports the notion that people with an SAC are unable to assimilate portions of information into a coherent whole, in other words they may lack an ability to see “the whole picture” (Firth 1989). However this theory attempts to include all areas of autism and subsequent studies have queried the suggestion of a universal central coherence theory. However I feel it is useful in explaining why some people I support have difficulties with putting things into the correct context. Difficulties with the role of emotion and self (Cuming et al 1998) explain how children with an SAC find it difficult to engage on an emotional level with peers or a teacher.

This affects the child’s ability to make sense of their world through their experience of interaction and forming relationships with others. It is core to forming one’s own self-image and being aware of other individuals with the child growing up which may be carried over into adult life. I have supported a young man in the past who found it difficult to mix with others. He’d had negative experiences at school and was left feeling isolated. As a result he found it difficult to engage with society and refused activities such as college courses that were offered to him. Because of the very nature of autism some people with an SAC may have difficulties due to certain areas of the learning process being affected.

These may include flexibility of thinking, capacity to generalize, executive functioning, ability to process information, central coherence, attention and concentration. Cognitive processes are also affected by certain conditions like language delay and a social skills not being developed in a typical way. Therefore the teaching approach has to e individualized to take in the strengths and weaknesses of the person with an SAC Radon & Powell 1995). In my role as a support worker I have to think carefully before embarking on teaching or developing skills with an individual. I may have to adapt my pace to suit theirs. I may have to use a social story to contextual the skill or task.

I will think about how any new demand to learn a new skill will affect their behavior. But by understanding autism I can take a step back from the “typical world” and see how what I do impacts in the “autistic world”. People with an SAC often experience sensory processing difficulties (Bashing 2003) and although these are not included in a diagnosis these difficulties can have a big impact on the individual, how they process information and on behavior. Individual can experience hyper or hypo-sensitivities to the senses. For example a person with an SAC may be hypersensitive to sound and this can cause a sensory overload with the person withdrawing and “some people shut down and tune out’ completely’.

Other sensory processing difficulties include vestibular (balance and uneven surfaces), preconception (sensing where the body is in space), visual, touch, taste and smell. A person with an SAC may find it difficult to process several sensory stimuli at a time leading to a sense of over or under stimulation. A person with an SAC may have difficulties with developing communication and language. In many cases verbal language develops in advance of the ability to communicate effectively leading to the assumption that an individual with an SAC understands verbal communication and instructions when in fact there is a difficulty. The world by its very nature is a mass of confusing signs and chaos. People with an SAC have to in varying degrees rely on the support of others to interpret the world.