Essay: Learning difficulties faced by autistic children

19 Oct

Essay: Learning difficulties faced by autistic children

Sample Essay

A study by Frick (1991; as cited by Hinshaw, 1992) also found inattention and hyperactivity to be more associated with learning difficulties than conduct disorder in school-age children. Children were classified as ADHD, conduct disordered, or as a control group on the basis of parent, teacher, and child interview information. Furthermore, six to 20 percent (depending on the criteria used) of the ADHD and conduct disordered children showed signs of underachievement.

Further analyses controlling for the presence of both ADHD and conduct ASD disorder symptoms in some children, however, revealed that only ADHD was uniquely associated with underachievement; the apparent relationship between conduct disorder and underachievement was really due to the presence of attention-related problems in many children with conduct disorder.

Other research, documents strong overlap between inattentive and hyperactive behaviors and ASD in school-age children. In terms of attention-related behaviors, Gresham and Reschly (1986) found that teachers rated children already identified with ASD to be less competent on behaviors such as attending, completing tasks, following directions, and independent seatwork. With respect to hyperactivity, Lambert and Sandoval (1980; as cited in Bruck & Hebert, 1982) reported that in a school sample of children identified with hyperactivity, 43% could be objectively classified as having a learning disability.

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