Screening Tool for Autism/PDD

I have recently received so many questions from parents with children who are exhibiting characteristics of autism spectrum disorders that I thought I’d place a couple of links for initial screening tools for parents to use at home.

Before you leave this site to “take the test,” let me add that in no way should this questionaire substitute for a professional evaluation by a multidisciplinary team including a developmental pediatrician, pediatric psychologist, speech-language pathologist, and occupational therapist. For parents who are concerned about your child, I strongly encourage you to pursue professional assessments. Many parents who adapt a “wait and see” approach often regret this when they realize they wasted precious time. Birth to 5 (and especially birth to 3) is critical for language development. Don’t blow it!

Another test that’s widely used to screen for autism in toddlers is the M CHAT. Due to copyright restrictions, I am not going to post a link for this tool, but you can find it by searching for M CHAT at google or another search engine. You should also look for the link for the scoring guide BEFORE you take this so that you’ll know if you will be able to assign meaning to your final score. THE AUTHORS RECOMMEND THAT THE PERSON WHO SCORES IT BE DIFFERENT THAN THE PERSON COMPLETING THE QUESTIONS. Read about it before you do it and misinterpret your results.

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1 Comment

  1. Lydia on November 1, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    Hi Laura,
    My daughter is 21 months, she barely jabbers, when she gets mad she says da-da-da, but not to him and not looking for him. That is the only word or phrase that we can make out that she even attempts to say and it isn’t directed to him. we went to a ENT, and Audiologist yesterday to have her checked out and to make sure she wasn’t suffering from hearing loss. All went well, she can hear fine and her ears are clear. So that’s not the problem. I have read that at 21 months she should have 15-30 words in her vocabulary and should be putting 2-3 words together to form a phrase or sentence. I am glad to see that i a not the only one that has these problems with their children, although i do know every child is different. in your professional opinion what should I do?

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