Other studies are beginning to evolve that focus on the social-cognitive skills of children with autism (e.g., Bauminger & Kasari, 2000; Bauminger, 2003). Bauminger and Kasari’s (2000) study investigated the relationship between loneliness and friendships of children with high functioning autism (HFA).
Their findings suggest that children with HFA do understand the concept of loneliness, as defined when an individual recognizes the absence of a close and intimate relationship or feels the lack of being a part of a social group. Students with ASD in their study further suggest that besides reporting feeling lonely, that these children have a social desire to be involved in relationships and many of the subjects did report having at least one friend.
Lastly, a few more recent studies have compared children with and without disabilities on social-cognitive skills that are analogous to the steps in Crick and Dodge’s (1994) social information-processing model. Results from these different types of studies are reviewed below to provide converging evidence for the wide ranging social-cognitive deficits of children with ASD.
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