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Autism & Autism Spectrum
Disorder (ASD)
Autism and autism spectrum
disorder are both general but
different terms for a variety of
mental conditions, present
from early childhood,
characterized by difficulty in
communicating and forming
relationships with other people
and in using language and
abstract concepts (New
Oxford American Dictionary).
According to LEARN NC, the following make up
the spectrum:
• Autism
• Pervasive Developmental Disorder
• Asperger Syndrome
• Rett Disorder
• Childhood Disintegrative Disorder
What are the causes of
autism and autism spectrum
disorder?
In a nutshell, we don’t know for sure. There are different
theories and it’s believed that there are likely a number of
contributing factors, from genetic to environmental. It was
previously believed by some that vaccines caused autism.
This has since been discredited. Other theories abound.
Genetics
Genetic factors account
for some cases of
autism, but not all. Why
this is, and to what
extent, is still unclear to
researchers. Doctors
know that genetics play
a larger role in some
cases, than in others.
Dr. Wendy
Chung is a
geneticist.
Please take the
time to view her
talk on autism
and autism
spectrum
disorder in the
following from
TED Talks.
Environmental
Factors
Similar to genetic factors,
there are many unknowns on
the environmental side. We do
know that things such as age
of (both) parents, infections
the mother may have while
pregnant, birth complications
especially lack of oxygen
during childbirth, and others
are contributing factors, but
it’s still hard to pinpoint to
exactly what degree.
Ryan Trout, a young man with autism describes some of
the characteristics, here.
Some others include:
Difficulty forming and keeping relationships, as well as other
social constructs, like sharing an enjoyable experience.
Repetition, manifested in many ways, physical and
otherwise.
Intellectual impairment and learning difficulties.
Delayed language development.
Trouble initiating and maintaining conversations.
Repetitive use of language, parroting.
link
The following are some ideas for inclusion in mainstream classrooms for
students on the Autism Spectrum.
• Representation, visual aids.
• Visual reminders.
• Picture aids.
• Use of question words, who, what, where, when, how, why.
• Visual representation of a schedule for example, rather than its original
written form.
• Pictures to represent emotions.
• Routine, reinforcing the concept, repetition.
• Teaching social behavior.
• Using and reinforcing pronouns, “I” and “you” properly.
• Using and reinforcing possessive pronouns, “mine” and “yours” properly.
From Learn NC (http://www.learnnc.org/lp/editions/picture-symbols/7010)
Autism Speaks (https://www.autismspeaks.org/community-and-
support-network/support-groups)
Spectrum Autism Support Group (http://www.atl-spectrum.com)
Autism Society of America (http://www.autism-society.org)
Autism Initiatives (http://www.autisminitiatives.org)
Autism Now (http://autismnow.org)
There are many, many more. You can find some of them in this list:
http://www.friendshipcircle.org/blog/2013/07/15/15-indispensible-
websites-for-parents-of-children-with-autism/

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Autism

  • 1. Autism & Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • 2.
  • 3. Autism and autism spectrum disorder are both general but different terms for a variety of mental conditions, present from early childhood, characterized by difficulty in communicating and forming relationships with other people and in using language and abstract concepts (New Oxford American Dictionary).
  • 4. According to LEARN NC, the following make up the spectrum: • Autism • Pervasive Developmental Disorder • Asperger Syndrome • Rett Disorder • Childhood Disintegrative Disorder
  • 5.
  • 6. What are the causes of autism and autism spectrum disorder?
  • 7. In a nutshell, we don’t know for sure. There are different theories and it’s believed that there are likely a number of contributing factors, from genetic to environmental. It was previously believed by some that vaccines caused autism. This has since been discredited. Other theories abound.
  • 8. Genetics Genetic factors account for some cases of autism, but not all. Why this is, and to what extent, is still unclear to researchers. Doctors know that genetics play a larger role in some cases, than in others.
  • 9. Dr. Wendy Chung is a geneticist. Please take the time to view her talk on autism and autism spectrum disorder in the following from TED Talks.
  • 10. Environmental Factors Similar to genetic factors, there are many unknowns on the environmental side. We do know that things such as age of (both) parents, infections the mother may have while pregnant, birth complications especially lack of oxygen during childbirth, and others are contributing factors, but it’s still hard to pinpoint to exactly what degree.
  • 11. Ryan Trout, a young man with autism describes some of the characteristics, here. Some others include: Difficulty forming and keeping relationships, as well as other social constructs, like sharing an enjoyable experience. Repetition, manifested in many ways, physical and otherwise. Intellectual impairment and learning difficulties. Delayed language development. Trouble initiating and maintaining conversations. Repetitive use of language, parroting.
  • 12.
  • 13. link The following are some ideas for inclusion in mainstream classrooms for students on the Autism Spectrum. • Representation, visual aids. • Visual reminders. • Picture aids. • Use of question words, who, what, where, when, how, why. • Visual representation of a schedule for example, rather than its original written form. • Pictures to represent emotions. • Routine, reinforcing the concept, repetition. • Teaching social behavior. • Using and reinforcing pronouns, “I” and “you” properly. • Using and reinforcing possessive pronouns, “mine” and “yours” properly. From Learn NC (http://www.learnnc.org/lp/editions/picture-symbols/7010)
  • 14. Autism Speaks (https://www.autismspeaks.org/community-and- support-network/support-groups) Spectrum Autism Support Group (http://www.atl-spectrum.com) Autism Society of America (http://www.autism-society.org) Autism Initiatives (http://www.autisminitiatives.org) Autism Now (http://autismnow.org) There are many, many more. You can find some of them in this list: http://www.friendshipcircle.org/blog/2013/07/15/15-indispensible- websites-for-parents-of-children-with-autism/