SPE 3340 THAA Diverse Learners
Autism Presentation Paper
April 14, 2013
Sarah Beth Leverette, Emily Gesink, Brooke Hilliar, and Megan Hogg Autism
Identification and Characteristics
“Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and autism are both general terms for a group of complex disorders of brain development” (Unknown, 2013). However, there are multiple definitions of Autism spectrum disorder and autism. The two most accepted definitions are those outlined in IDEA and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, The IDEA definition of ASD and Autism has these disorders characterized by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and academic performance, that can be observed prior to the child turning three years of age. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, these disorders are grouped under Pervasive Developmental Disorder. These disorders include, but are not limited to, autistic disorder, Rett syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder, and Asperger syndrome (APA, 2000). Characteristics of Autism or ASD include difficulties in language development, ranging from no verbal communication to complex communication, delayed language development, and echolalia. Echolalia is the uncontrollable and immediate repetition of words spoken by another person or sounds in the surrounding environment. It also includes difficulties in Social Development. These difficulties include delays in social interactions and social skills such as, impaired use of nonverbal behavior, lack of peer relationships, failure to spontaneously share enjoyment, interests, and achievements, as well as a Lack of reciprocity. Autism and ASDs are also characterized by repetitive behavior such as obsessions, tics, and perseverations. Those diagnosed with Autism or ASD are also said to display problem behavior such as self-injurious behavior or aggression, a need for environmental predictability, symptoms of sensory and movement...
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