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Autism: new inquiries on classical ground

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Traditional conceptualizations of autism might endorse it as a good candidate for “pure” psychopathological categories. This special issue will try to challenge such a view, by offering an update on recent answers, but also by raising many questions for the future study of autism. Such an approach is essential because an optimal “intervention kit” cannot be perfected as long as we don’t know for sure what autism is. This means to clarify the phenomenal aspects as well as the hidden nature of autism. Still, new findings might seem opaque to many professionals, as long as they rely on a traditional view of autism, which might obstruct reality. The costs of such a perspective, however, are to be discovered in the limited efficacy of the interventions in use. We propose there are several assumptions supporting a distorted view of autism, assumptions currently questioned by research and practice, as it will be shown by the papers of this special issue: 1) Autism is a homogenous disorder; 2) The core deficits underlying autistic pathology are clearly defined; 3) The age of onset for autistic pathology is around 36 months; 4) Autism has a clear etiology; 5) Autistic development parallels normal development; 6) Persons with autism are “invisible” as adults.

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Enhancing the communication development of toddlers with autism spectrum disorders

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Research and professional development efforts over recent years have resulted in an increase in the number of children who are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders prior to the age of three years. Clinicians have access to a larger body of evidence describing the characteristics of young children with autism, but a relatively limited body of direct evidence regarding the most effective interventions for these children. In this article we focus on evidence that is relevant to efforts to improve the communicative functioning of young children with autism with due consideration given to the developmental needs of toddlers as well as the needs of their caregivers.

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Editorial

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The Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychotherapies is the direct descendent of the Romanian Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychotherapies. The Romanian Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychotherapies was founded in 2001, as the official publication of the Romanian Association of Hypnosis and Cognitive-Behavioral Psychotherapy. Because of the high standards promoted by the editorial board, […]

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