Comparing Children with ASD and Their Peers’ Growth in Print Knowledge
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Many children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) struggle with reading. An increased focus on emergent literacy skills—particularly print knowledge—might improve later reading outcomes. We analyzed longitudinal measures of print knowledge (i.e., alphabet knowledge and print-concept knowledge) for 35 preschoolers with ASD relative to a sample of 35 typically developing peers. Through multilevel growth curve analysis, we found that relative to their peers, children with ASD had comparable alphabet knowledge, lower print-concept knowledge, and acquired both skills at a similar rate. These findings suggest that children with ASD are unlikely to acquire print-concept knowledge commensurate to their peers without an increased emphasis on high-quality instruction that targets this skill.
KeywordsAutism Emergent literacy Print knowledge
The research was supported by U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences Grant R324A080037.
JD developed the study, participated in its design and coordination and drafted the manuscript; MB participated in the design and interpretation of the data; JAR participated in the design, performed the measurement, and performed the statistical analysis; LJ and JK conceived of the larger study, and participated in its design and coordination. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.
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