Reading Comprehension in Autism Spectrum Disorders: The Role of Oral
Language and Social Functioning
LanguageDisorders:from Infancy through Adolescence:
Jessie Ricketts•Catherine R. G. Jones•Francesca Happe ́•Tony Charman
Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing, and Communicating
impairments in social interaction,communication and repetive and
restricted behavior and interests.
RheaPaul,PhD, CCC-SLPProfessor, Yale Child Study Center
in the early stages of learning to read,children must develop the word
recognition skills that will enable them to read words and connected
texts accurately and fluently.
New Haven, Connecticut
Courtenay F.Norbury, PhD
Senior Research FellowDepartment of Psychology Royal Holloway University
of London London,England
oral language comprehension(e.g,receptive vocabulary,receptive grammar)
impoverished word recognition and oral language comprehension may
present barriers to successful reading comprehension in ASD.
dyslexia involves a specific deficit in single-word decoding that is
based in a weakness in the phonological domain of the oral language base
and has only a sencondary impact on reading comprehension.it is a
disorder affecting just one aspect of the reading process:decoding.
children with LLD,on the other hand,can have problems with both
single-word reading and comprehension,and not only of written
language,but of oral language,as well.these compre-hension problems are
through to stem from difficulties the child has not only in phonological
processing but in other language domains,such as syntax and semantics.
Wechsler Objective Reading Dimensions
閱讀理解from single sentence statements to expository paragraphs
children with language-learning disorder have consistently shown
problems with shor-term memory tasks.
Test for Reception of Grammar (TROG-E; Bishop2005)
problems with phonological processing,including memory,perception,and
complex produc-tion,that appear to be related to literacy can only be
tapped by specially designed tasks.
select pictures that correspond to sentence fo increasing grammatical
some of the deficits that appear to be related to memory or semantic
ability may actually stem from these “underground” phonological
skills,particularly the ablility to segment,store, and retrive words
from memory on the basis of their phonological properties.we need to add
phonological components to the intervention program.
required understanding of concepts such as double bluff,misunderstanding
,lies and persuasion,
have trouble understanding sentences with relative clauses ,passive
required the attribution of mental states to two interaction cartoon
students with language-learning disorder persist in misinterpreting
sentences such as “before you brush you teeth,put away your towel” in
which the order of clauses(brush teeth, put away towel)is the opposite
of the intended order of events(first put away towel.then bursh teeth)
four shortsilent animations showed the traingles moving together in ways
that suggested one triangle manipulating or anticipating the mental
state of the other (coaxing,mocking,seducing,surprising)
many individuals withASD experience difficulties with both oral and
written language comprehension,which will impact on many aspects of
functioning throughout the lifespan.
school-age children with normal development acquire many new vocabulary
items through reading rather than through conversation
difficulties in understanding complex oral directions;difficulites
producing and understand-ing figurative language,such as
metaphors,similes,and slang;and in producing narratives.
the language used by students with LLD is often more hostile,less
assertive,less persuasive, less polite and tactful,and less clear and
complete than that of peers,
other discourse genres
difficulities with processing and producing other types of discourse
differences between oral and literate language
oral style(to regulate social interaction;to request objects and
actions;to communicate face-to-face with a few people;to share
information about concrete objects and events)
leterate style(to regulate thinking;to reflect and request
information;to communicate over time and distance;to transmit
information to large numbers of people;to build abstract theories and
discuss abstract ideas.)
oral style(everyday objects and events;hear and now;topics flow
according to associations of participants;meaning is contextually based)
literate style(discourse is centered around preselected topic;meaning
comes from inferences and conclusions drawn from text)
oral style(high-frequency words;repetitive,predictable,redundant syntax
and content, pronouns,slang,jargon;cohesion based on intonation)
literate style(low-frequency words;concise syntax and
content;specific,abstract vocabulary; cohesion based on vocabulary and
setting-introduces the main characters,the protagonist,and the context
of time and place
initiating event-the occurrence that influences the main charater to
action.it may be a natural event,an action,or an internal event,such as
a thought,perception,or wish.
internal response-indicates the thoughts and feelings of the main
character in response to the initiating event,it may include an
interpretation of the event，formulation of a goal,or some other
plan-indicates the intended action of the main character
attempt-indicates the actions of the main character in pursuit of the
consequence-indicates the achievement or nonachievement of the main
character’s goal,as well as any other events or states that might result
from the attempt
reaction-includes any emotional or evaluation responses of the main
character to the preceding chain of events
different clutures have different ways of telling stories
an adaptation of applebee’s system for scoring narrative stages
stage 1(heap stories)
stage 2(sequence stories)
stage 3(primitive narratives)
stage 4(chain narrative)
stage 5(true narrative)
children with language-learning disorders have been shown to be less
accepted by peers, have poorer social skills and higher levels of
problem behavior than children with typical school achievement.
the samller that background knowledge store is,the less easily new
information can be added.
attention and activity
many students who have learning problems also have behavioral and
emotional difficulties that make it harder for them to take advantage of
the instruction,both regular and special, that they receive.
children with attention disorders are easily distracted and have short
attention spans,low frustration tolerance,inability to recognize the
consequences of their actions or learn from mistakes,and difficulty
organizing and completing tasks.
language,learning,and reading:what’s the connection?
the role of oral language in classroom discourse
teacher talk and the hidden curriculum
in school,the teacher chooses the topic and students must comment on
that topic,not one of their choosing.students who do attempt to shift
the topic to their own interests often find their remarks rejected or
in order to succeed in school,students have to be able to draw on two
sets of knowledge at the same time:their knowledge of academic
content(the right answers to teacher questions) and their knowledge of
the social communication rules of the classroom.
in school,though,much of what is discussed is quite outside the direct
experience of the students,not to mention its being literally outside
the immediate context of the physical environment,at home ,families
might talk about where dad’s shoe is,in school,teachers talk about where
classroom and cluture clash
defining words;recognizing synonyms,antonyms,and homonyms;diagramming
sentences and identifying parts of speech;recognizing grammatical and
morphological errors in the process of editing writing
assignments;recognizing ambiguity in words and structures with multiple
meanings;and the metalinguistic skills needed to acquire reading and
spelling competency all require an awareness of language beyond the
ability to use words and sentences to communicate.
metacognitive skills and self-regulation
ability to reflect on,talk about,and manage one’s thinking processes.
the role of oral language in the acquisition of literacy
oral language lays the foundation for acquiring literacy.
emergent literacy experiences are those in which children begins to
develop ideas about how written language works and what it is used for
before they actually begin decoding print.
aspects of emergent literacy that support the acquisition of reading and
oral language foundations for reading comprehension
literacy knowledge(print concepts,genres,etc.)
decoding(alphabetic principle,spelling-sound correspondences)
sight recognition(of familiar words)
fluent execution and coordination of word recognition and text