Write 2 pages thesis on the topic journal article summary. Autism Autism Autism is a disorder of neural development that causes impaired social interaction and verbal or non verbal communication. It a

Write 2 pages thesis on the topic journal article summary. Autism Autism Autism is a disorder of neural development that causes impaired social interaction and verbal or non verbal communication. It affects how a person relates with others and how they make sense of the world around them. Autism will affect people in different ways, while others can live relatively independent lives, some may experience learning difficulties and require a specialist support. Autistic people have over or under sensitivity to sound, taste, smell, color and light. Autistic people should be trained and monitored because this disability impairs their performance

In this study, the researchers wanted to establish reciprocal imitation of children with autism to non verbal communication. Children with autism were randomly assigned to an imitation or responsive groups. The groups engaged in intervention phase which adults imitated children or responded to them and a subsequent spontaneous play phase during which adults interacted spontaneously with the children. (Nadel J, 2006) Children in the imitation group spent a lot of time showing social attention and initiating new behaviors in the intervention phase and showing social attention and imitating adult behavior in the spontaneous play phase.

Early imitation deficit of a child is thought to interfere with their social interaction and therefore affecting their mental maturity and language development. Research has shown that imitation by adults can facilitate imitative behavior in children with autism. In another study to compare the interaction of an imitative researcher compared to the children’s’ parents, the researcher showed more imitative and playful behavior than the parents. This is because parents used more of playful behavior and less of the imitative technique. The children’s imitation, social attention and initiation of new behaviors were enhanced due to the imitation from adults and playfulness. (Nadel J, 2006)

The method used for the study includes participants, target behavior and procedures. Participants were twenty pre-school non verbal children, ten boys and ten girls. Their ages were between four and six years old. This group of participants was homogeneous and did not have much variability. They also were low performing and classified as non-verbal based on their diagnostic assessment. The sessions were carried out in a playroom with two chairs, a table and two identical toys to enable imitation. The intervention phase used three minutes where an un-familiar researcher was assigned to respond with a non-verbal behavior to the children’s behavior. (Nadel J, 2006) The succeeding phase, the spontaneous play phase, the researchers were asked to play naturally with the children. Coding of behaviors of imitation, social interaction and initiating new behaviors were assigned to trained graduates who did not know the purpose of the study. The percentage time was then calculated because the length of interaction phases varied with seconds.

The results showed that more adult imitation occurred in the imitation group verses the responsive one. Similarly, more playfulness occurred in the imitation group in the intervention and spontaneous phases. The groups did not differ in the percentage time the adults used in the spontaneous play phase. It was also revealed that children in the imitation group showed more social interaction and initiating new behaviors. (Nadel J, 2006)

It is clear from the study that imitation is a contingent responsive behavior. However, it is difficult to imitate all the autistic children behaviors, especially the stereotypic. The study is meaningful in helping pre-school children with autism develop on how to relate with people socially. The research is impressive can be used by many parents that have autistic children. In time when autistic children are neglected this research is an important milestone for bettering their lives and giving them a sense of belonging.


Nadel, J. (2006). Does imitation matter to children with autism? In S. J. Rogers, & J. H. G.

Williams(Eds.), Imitation and the social mind: Autism and typical development (pp. 118–137).New York, NY: Guilford Press.

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