Challenges Faced by Autistic Children in Understanding Others

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By Anne Trafton
Published in the spring of 2013 on MIT News 

One of the defining characteristics of autism is difficulty communicating with others. However, it is unclear whether those struggles arise only from the poor social skills commonly associated with autism, or whether autistic children suffer from more specific linguistic impairments.

“If a kid doesn’t interact in the right way because of a social deficit, that could be a communication difficulty, but you wouldn’t really say that their linguistic ability in a computational sense was hurt,” says Kenneth Wexler, a professor of brain and cognitive sciences at MIT. Read the full story.