Psycholinguistic Approaches to Language and Communication in Autism

  • Helen Tager-Flusberg
Part of the Current Issues in Autism book series (CIAM)


During the past decade, there has been a concerted effort to begin applying some of the basic concepts of developmental psycholinguistics to our understanding of the primary language and communication problems of autistic children. Most of these efforts have addressed two fundamental issues. First, In what ways are autistic children who acquire some functional language similar to, or different from, normal children acquiring language? And second, How can we apply psycholinguistic principles to the treatment of mute or minimally verbal autistic children? In this chapter, I will briefly review the research directed at both these issues and will then present an alternative approach to these issues demonstrating how I believe developmental psycholinguistics can make its greatest impact in furthering our understanding of the autistic child’s language and communication deficits.


Normal Child Autistic Child Word Order Language Acquisition Functional Language 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helen Tager-Flusberg
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of MassachusettsBostonUSA

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