The autistic spectrum: From theory to practice
The autistic spectrum: From theory to practice

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The autistic spectrum: From theory to practice

1.5 Section summary

  • The term ‘autism’ was originally introduced by the psychiatrist Kanner to describe a syndrome he observed in some of his child patients.

  • People with autistic spectrum disorders have a moderate to profound inability to make sense of, and engage ‘normally’ with, everyday events and situations, particularly those with a ‘human’ content.

  • They have particular difficulties in three areas: social interaction, language and communication, and rigid adherence to narrow interests, routines and activities.

  • Current thinking favours the idea of autism as a spectrum of difficulties.

  • Males are more frequently affected than females.

  • Psychological work on autistic spectrum disorders embraces a variety of interacting perspectives and disciplines, all of which seek understanding of the condition and effective approaches to support and treatment.

  • This work is characterised by different levels of analysis and the use of different kinds of evidence.

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