Understanding autism
Understanding autism

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Understanding autism

Glossary


Browse the glossary using this index

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B

Biological explanation

This suggests that the causes of a condition are rooted in a person’s biological make-up, that is, their genes and the structure and function of the brain and other components of the nervous system.


Blinding

In experiments and observational studies, this refers to the procedure in which the researcher evaluating the behaviour does not know which participants are in the experimental group and which are in the control group.


Body language

The means by which information about thoughts, feelings or attitudes is communicated non-verbally, either consciously or non-consciously. Includes facial expressions, gesture and posture, as well as the use of space.


Brain imaging

A number of techniques that generate computerised images of the living brain, used to investigate structural and functional characteristics. Includes MRI and fMRI.

Broader Autism Phenotype (BAP)

Milder manifestations of traits characteristic for autism in relatives of people with autism.


C

CAMHS

Acronym for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, services within the UK National Health Service that assess and treat young people with emotional, behavioural or mental health difficulties. Usually a multi-disciplinary team including psychologists, psychiatrists and other specialists.


Candidate genes

A gene whose function, or location on a chromosome, suggests that it might be associated with a condition or disorder.


Case study

In-depth observation and description of the specific characteristics of a selected individual. Pooling of case study material across individuals may permit identification of general features. The method is used by clinical practitioners, and in some forms of research.


Chelation

An approach which some have misleadingly claimed alleviates or cures autism by eliminating ‘excess toxins’ from the body. Described by the UK’s National Institution for Clinical Excellence (NICE) as harmful and to be avoided.


Child-centred

A term describing interventions which involve following the child's own interests and motivation as a means of encouraging interaction and learning. (See also adult-directed approaches.)



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