Affecting approximately one in 500 children, Autism is currently seen as a common childhood disorder with core deficits in communication, socialization, play, and behavior. (Prelock,(2001). These core deficits make the Audiologist and Speech Language Pathologist (ASLP) a very important member of the team for effective (re)habilitation of the child and his family.The role of an ASLP includes hearing screening and speech and language evaluation followed by family education and intervention for the speech, language and hearing deficits. The goal is to enable functional communication. Also, monitoring siblings for social, communication, and play skills is important because of the potential genetic link. (Filipek et al., 2000).
Tools such as the Checklist for Autism in Toddlers (CHAT, Baird et al.2000), Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers, (M-CHAT, Robins, Fein, Barton & Green, 2001), are used when there are indicators for ASD seen in children at home, playschool or at school. The Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS; Schopler, Reichler, & Renner, 1988) is used very commonly in clinical contexts to diagnose children with ASD. (Cited in proceedings of Ad Hoc Committee for A.S.D.)
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