Collections > Electronic Theses and Dissertations > Early social communication behaviors and their relationship with later social orienting and joint attention behaviors in young children with autism

Infants and toddlers with autism exhibit early social communication deficits, specifically in the exhibition of social orienting and joint attention. The current study examined the social communication behaviors in children at age three who had been identified previously as either at-risk for autism or who were typically developing. The parents of all the children completed the First Year Inventory (FYI), which is designed to screen infants from the general population for risk of autism. A sample of these infants were given follow-up measures at age three and were evaluated using a coding system quantifying the social communication behaviors children exhibited during the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) evaluation. The relationship between early social communication behaviors reported by parents at 12-months, and later manifestations of these behaviors at age three were examined. Although results did not suggest a relationship between the two time points, limitations of the current study, as well as future steps, are discussed.