1 Autistic traits and neurotypicality
As you saw in Week 1, autism involves characteristic traits – ways of behaving and interacting with the world – which differ from those of the neurotypical population.
Given the varying pattern and impact of these differences in autism, specialists need clear and explicit criteria to evaluate whether, say, one person’s limited use of spoken language and another person’s excessively verbose speech both ‘tick the box’ for an autism-related symptom. Diagnostic criteria are developed, piloted and refined over a period of years by specialist working groups. You will explore them in more detail next week. Meanwhile, watch this clip in which Arabella describes how she came to realise that her daughter, Iris Grace, might be different from other children.