It is the goal of this paper to discuss autism spectrum conditions, cognitive theories which aim to provide an understanding of it, the failure to achieve this and the reasons for the failure that relate to the complex nature of autism. What is Autism Spectrum Disorder? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2012) defines Autism Spectrum Disorders as “a group of developmental disabilities characterized by impairments in social interaction and communication and by restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behaviour”. Being a spectrum disorder or condition, this also implies that autism is manifested according to a range of degree of severity (Baron-Cohen 2008). ASDs are conditions that largely affect the social abilities of a person and consequently the progress to most aspects of developmental growth. ASDs are generally recognized through its main symptom which is reliably detected, that is the deficiency in verbal and nonverbal communication (Baron-Cohen et al. 1985). On one side, it may appear that an individual with ASD is completely deficient of social skills, language and key learning capabilities. In this case, this is diagnosed as classic autism (Baron-Cohen 2008). ...
These two extremities are both recognized under ADS. Common characteristics of these diagnoses are the strong inclination of the individual to engage in routinary and repetitive activities, and that they can be exceptionally consumed in topics of their interest. It is reported that 1% of the population have autism (Baron-Cohen 2008; Gillberg 2004). Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders It is alarming that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (2012) Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network (ADDM) reports that one in 88 children in United States has been identified with ASD. ADDM was able to identify in their studies that ASD reaches its peak manifestation at age 8 while symptoms are typically revealing even before the age of 3 years old (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2012). Understanding the ASD by methods of research and regular discussions indeed shows necessity at this current time as not only individuals and their families are being affected by this phenomenon. It can be regarded as a national and worldwide issue. The rise of ASD cases is expected as projected by a simple model created from various sources of autism data. Rogers 2011 shows a forecast of adults with autism to increase by over 600% using any extrapolation assumption. The care, support and management of ASDs are costly. In the United States, it costs over $12,000 to educate students with disabilities annually while for adults, it costs about $50,000 to $100,000 to support in a living set-up. These figures still vary according to age range of autism and also life longevity. Thus, this poses an imperative area of research for more detailed knowledge and understanding on the occurrence and extending of ASD cases.
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