Reading and Text Comprehension Skills in School-age Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders


This chapter selectively reviews the research literature on reading skills and text comprehension in school-aged children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). It is argued that a conceptual distinction between the ability to read/decode words and the ability to comprehend text is critical, as many children with ASD experience difficulties only with the latter task. Based on the existent literature, which is rather limited, there is no clear evidence that skills underlying the word reading process differ in ASD from typical development. Possible reasons for the text comprehension difficulties often seen in ASD include oral language impairment, inferencing difficulties, and deficits in social understanding/theory of mind. Potentially promising teaching techniques for supporting comprehension development are also discussed.


Autism Spectrum Disorder Autism Spectrum Disorder Reading Comprehension Phonological Awareness Word Reading 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Gillberg Neuropsychiatry CentreUniversity of GothenburgGothenburgSweden

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