The Emergent Literacy Skills of Preschool Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
- 1.9k Downloads
A high percentage of school-age students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have reading comprehension difficulties leading to academic disadvantage. These difficulties may be related to differences in children’s emergent literacy development in the preschool years. In this study, we examined the relationship between emergent literacy skills, broader cognitive and language ability, autism severity, and home literacy environment factors in 57 preschoolers with ASD. The children showed strengths in code-related emergent literacy skills such as alphabet knowledge, but significant difficulties with meaning-related emergent literacy skills. There was a significant relationship between meaning-related skills, autism severity, general oral language skills, and nonverbal cognition. Identification of these meaning-related precursors will guide the targets for early intervention to help ensure reading success for students with ASD.
KeywordsASD Emergent literacy Preschool-age
The authors acknowledge the assistance from Dr Deborah Costley and Dr Greta Ridley. We sincerely thank the families who participated in this study for their time and commitment to the study.
MW conceived of the study, initiated the grant application, participated in its design and coordination and drafted the manuscript; JP participated in the design and statistical analysis of the data and helped draft the manuscript; DT participated in the design and statistical analysis of the data. AW, AH and JR participated in the design; All authors assisted with participant recruitment, participated in the interpretation of the data, provided feedback on the manuscript drafts, and read and approved the final manuscript.
The authors acknowledge the financial support of the Cooperative Research Centre for Living with Autism, established and supported under the Australian Government’s Cooperative Research Centres Program.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
- Achenbach, T. M., & Rescorla, L. (2000). Child behavior checklist for ages 1½–5. Burlington, VT: University of Vermont.Google Scholar
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (Producer). (2014). Autism in Australia, 2012. Retrieved from http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/Latestproducts/4428.0Main%20Features12012?opendocument&tabname=Summary&prodno=4428.0&issue=2012&num=&view=.
- Cabell, S. Q., Lomax, R., Justice, L., Breit-Smith, A., Skibbe, L., & McGinty, A. (2010). Emergent literacy profiles of preschool-age children with Specific Language Impairment. International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 12(6), 472–482. doi: 10.3109/17549507.2011.492874.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Catts, H. W., Hogan, T. P., & Adlof, S. M. (2005). Developmental changes in reading and reading disabilities. In H. W. Catts & A. G. Kamhi (Eds.), Connections between language and reading disabilities (pp. 25–40). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2014). Prevalence of autism spectrum disorder among children aged 8 years: Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, 11 Sites, United States. MMWR CDC Surveillance Summaries, 63, 1–22.Google Scholar
- Clay, M. M. (2000). Concepts about print: What have children learned about printed language? Portsmouth: Heinemann.Google Scholar
- Dickinson, D. K., & Chaney, C (1997). Emergent literacy profile. Newton, MA: Education Development Centre Inc. & Carolyn Chaney.Google Scholar
- Dickinson, D. K., McCabe, A., Anastasopoulos, L., Peisner-Feinberg, E. S., & Poe, M. D. (2003). The comprehensive language approach to early literacy: The interrelationships among vocabulary, phonological sensitivity, and print knowledge among preschool-aged children. Journal of Educational Psychology, 95(3), 465–481. doi: 10.1037/0022-06220.127.116.115.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Dodd, B., Crosbie, S., McIntosh, B., Teitzel, T., & Ozanne, A. (2000). Preschool and primary inventory of phonological awareness (PIPA). London: Pearson PsychCorp.Google Scholar
- Dunn, L. M., & Dunn, L. M. (2007). Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test-4. Circle Pines, MN: American Guidance Service.Google Scholar
- Estes, A., Rivera, V., Bryan, M., Cali, P., & Dawson, G. (2011). Discrepancies between academic achievement and intellectual ability in higher-functioning school-aged children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 41(8), 1044–1052. doi: 10.1007/s10803-010-1127-3.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Foorman, B. R., Herrera, S., Petscher, Y., Mitchell, A., & Truckenmiller, A. (2015). The structure of oral language and reading and their relation to comprehension in Kindergarten through Grade 2. Reading and Writing, 28(5), 655–681. doi: 10.1007/s11145-015-9544-5.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Invernizzi, M., Sullivan, A., & Meier, J. D. (2001). Phonological awareness literacy screening: Pre-kindergarten. Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia.Google Scholar
- Invernizzi, M., Sullivan, A., Meier, J. D., & Swank, L. (2004). Phonological awareness literacy screening for preschoolers. Teacher’s manual. Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia.Google Scholar
- Justice, L. M. (Ed.) (2006). Clinical approaches to emergent literacy intervention. San Diego, CA: Plural Publishing.Google Scholar
- Justice, L. M., Bowles, R. P., & Skibbe, L. E. (2006). Measuring preschool attainment of print-concept knowledge: A study of typical and at-risk 3- to 5-year-old children using item response theory. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 37(3), 224–235. doi: 10.1044/0161-1461(2006/024).CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Lee, L. -C., David, A. B., Rusyniak, J., Landa, R., & Newschaffer, C. J. (2007). Performance of the Social Communication Questionnaire in children receiving preschool special education services. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 1(2), 126–138. doi: 10.1016/j.rasd.2006.08.004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lord, C., Rutter, M., DiLavore, P. C., Risi, S., Gotham, K., & Bishop, S. (2012). Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-2nd edition: (ADOS-2). Torrance, CA: Western Psychological Services.Google Scholar
- Mullen, E. M. (1995). Mullen scales of early learning. Circle Pines, MN: American Guidance Service.Google Scholar
- National Early Literacy Panel. (2008). Developing early literacy: Report of the National Early Literacy Panel. Washington, DC: National Institute for Literacy.Google Scholar
- Paynter, J., Riley, E., Beamish, W., Davies, M., & Milford, T. (2013). The double ABCX model of family adaptation in families of a child with an autism spectrum disorder attending an Australian early intervention service. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 7(10), 1183–1195. doi: 10.1016/j.rasd.2013.07.006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Pentimonti, J. M., Zucker, T. A., Justice, L. M., Petscher, Y., Piasta, S. B., & Kaderavek, J. N. (2012). A standardized tool for assessing the quality of classroom-based shared reading: Systematic Assessment of Book Reading (SABR). Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 27(3), 512–528. doi: 10.1016/j.ecresq.2011.12.007.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Petrill, S. A., Logan, J. A. R., Sawyer, B. E., & Justice, L. M. (2014). It depends: Conditional correlation between frequency of storybook reading and emergent literacy skills in children with language impairments. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 47(6), 491–502. doi: 10.1177/0022219412470518.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Reid, D., Hresko, W., & Hammill, D. (2001). Test of early reading ability (3rd ed.). Austin, TX: Pro-Ed.Google Scholar
- Rutter, M., Bailey, M. D., & Lord, C. (2003). The Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ). Los Angeles, CA: Western Psychological Services.Google Scholar
- Sénéchal, M., Pagan, S., Lever, R., & Ouellette, G. P. (2008). Relations among the frequency of shared reading and 4-year-old children’s vocabulary, morphological and syntax comprehension, and narrative skills. Early Education & Development, 19(1), 27–44. doi: 10.1080/10409280701838710.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Sparrow, S. S., Cicchetti, D. V., & Balla, D. A. (2005). Vineland II: Vineland adaptive behavior scales. Bloomington, MN: Pearson.Google Scholar
- Tunmer, W. E., Chapman, J. W., & Prochnow, J. E. (2006). Literate cultural capital at school entry predicts later reading achievement: A seven year longitudinal study. New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies, 41(2), 183–204.Google Scholar
- Westerveld, M. F., Gillon, G. T., van Bysterveldt, A. K., & Boyd, L. (2015). The emergent literacy skills of four-year-old children receiving free Kindergarten early childhood education in New Zealand. International Journal of Early Years Education, 23, 339–351. doi: 10.1080/09669760.2015.1033617.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Whitehouse, A. J. O., Line, E. A., Watt, H. J., & Bishop, D. V. M. (2009). Qualitative aspects of developmental language impairment relate to language and literacy outcome in adulthood. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 44(4), 489–510. doi: 10.1080/13682820802708080.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Wong, C., Odom, S. L., Hume, K. A., Cox, A. W., Fettig, A., Kucharczyk, S., et al. (2015). Evidence-based practices for children, youth, and young adults with autism spectrum disorder: A comprehensive review. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 45(7), 1951–1966. doi: 10.1007/s10803-014-2351-z.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Woodcock, R. W. (1998). Woodcock reading mastery tests, revised. Circle Pines, MN: American Guidance Service.Google Scholar
- Yoder, P., Watson, L. R., & Lambert, W. (2015). Value-added predictors of expressive and receptive language growth in initially nonverbal preschoolers with autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 45(5), 1254. doi: 10.1007/s10803-014-2286-4.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Zimmerman, I., Steiner, V., & Pond, R. (2002). Preschool language scale-fourth edition [PLS-4] (4th ed.). San Antonio, TX: PsychCorp.Google Scholar