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Children with Autism Diagnosis and Intervention to Meet Their Needs

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Book - Children with Autism Diagnosis and Intervention to Meet Their Needs

by: Colwyn Trevarthen, Jacqueline Robarts, Despina Papoudi and Kenneth J. Aitken

About the author:

Colwyn Trevarthen is Professor of Child Psychology and Psychobiology at Edinburgh University.
Jacqueline Robarts is Research Fellow in Music Therapy, City University London and Senior Music Therapist and Clinical Tutor at the Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy Centre, London.

Kenneth J. Aitken is a practising clinical psychologist based in Edinburgh, Scotland. He is active among many charitable organisations and research initiatives dedicated to building a better understanding of autism spectrum disorders and related conditions. Kenneth has published numerous academic and popular articles on ASD.

ISBN: 978-1-85302-555-6

Year: 1998

Publication Info: 368pp


This completely revised and substantially expanded new edition embraces new developments in this rapidly developing field. Every chapter has been rewritten with the addition of new material, and a new final chapter on `Putting the Pieces Together’ reflects the authors’ conviction that the complexity of autism means that many kinds of information are valuable and need to be taken into account in providing therapy or teaching for children with autism.

Other chapters, updated from the first edition, include a description of the latest information on the findings of brain research (put into the context of the development of the human brain and its effect on communication in early childhood), and the contributions of music therapy and psychoanalysis. A very much enlarged chapter on educational provision for children with autism and Asperger’s Syndrome provides information on the latest methods for improving the learning of these children, to give them the best possible preparation for a life of greater autonomy and maximum self-satisfaction in the pleasure of human company. New appendices summarise medical diagnostic systems, checklists and questionnaires for identifying autism, and the glossary has been considerably expanded. The wealth of up-to-date information provided will be invaluable not only for researchers and students but also for psychologists, teachers and other professionals, and parents, carers and family members in search of comprehensive and helpful information.



Preface. 1.Introduction. 2.The `Discovery’ of Autism and Many Definitions. 3.Similar Disorders and Important Distinctions. 4.How Many Autistic Children? 5.What Causes Autism? What Are the First Effects? 6.Brain Development and Autism. 7.Brain Abnormalities in Autism. 8.Where Development of the Communicating Mind Goes Astray. 9.Communicating and Playing with an Autistic Child. 10.What Can Be Done? 11.Music Therapy for Children with Autism. 12.Psychoanalysis and the Management of Pervasive Developmental Disorders, Including Autism. 13.Education for Autistic Children. 14.Putting the Pieces Together. Appendix 1.Autism in Medical Diagnostic Systems. Appendix 2. Checklists and Questionnaires for Autism. Appendix 3. Information on the Internet. Bibliography. Glossary. Index.



This book sets out to cover an ambitious range of topics. It has been substantially revised since its first edition in 1996 and expanded to incorporate many of the advances in research and practice. The authors acknowledge the notion of “autistic spectrum disorders”. They promote the need to ‘value many kinds of information’ and to learn from ‘different methods of therapy or teaching’. Those practitioners interested in the more ‘non-directive’ interventions, such as music therapy and play-based learning, are likely to find some interesting ideas in the text. The over-riding focus on developmental psychology is of value in helping those who support children with autistic spectrum disorders to understand the pervasive nature of the condition and the processes affected. It will update some readers’ knowledge of recent advances in developmental psychology, especially those related to early, and more typical, interpersonal and communication patterns found between infants and carers. The chapter entitled “Education for Autistic Children” has now been substantially revised and provides a comprehensive insight into the range of approaches and promotes early intervention. This chapter may be of value to parents and practitioners and it quite usefully breaks down developmental phases such as pre-school, primary aged children and adolescents.


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