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Relations between language, non-verbal cognition, and conceptualization in non- or minimally verbal individuals with ASD across the lifespan

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dc.contributor.author Slušná, Dominika
dc.contributor.author Rodríguez, Andrea
dc.contributor.author Salvadó, Berta
dc.contributor.author Vicente, Agustín
dc.contributor.author Hinzen, Wolfram
dc.date.accessioned 2022-06-02T05:53:18Z
dc.date.available 2022-06-02T05:53:18Z
dc.date.issued 2021
dc.identifier.citation Slušná D, Rodríguez A, Salvadó B, Vicente A, Hinzen W. Relations between language, non-verbal cognition, and conceptualization in non- or minimally verbal individuals with ASD across the lifespan. Autism Dev Lang Impair. 2021;6(January-December):12p. DOI: 10.1177/23969415211053264
dc.identifier.issn 2396-9415
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10230/53351
dc.description.abstract Background & aims: Individuals with non- or minimally verbal autism (nvASD) are primarily characterized by a severe speech production deficit, with speech limited to no or only a few words by school age. Significant unclarity remains over variability in language profiles across the lifespan, the nature of the language impairment seen, and (dis-) associations between linguistic and nonverbal cognitive measures. Methods: To address these questions, we recruited both a school-age and an adult group with nvASD (total N =49) and investigated relations between expressive and receptive language, and between these and nonverbal intelligence quotient (NVIQ) and sense-making capacities (the ComFor test). Results: Results revealed limited variation across this sample in receptive language, which in turn predicted expressive language levels. Importantly, an upward trend in verbal mental age (VMA) across increasing chronological age was seen in the youngsters (only). A radical dissociation between NVIQ and both expressive and receptive language transpired as well, and a subset of individuals with normal NVIQ were comparable in terms of any other cognitive aspect. Sense-making reached symbolic levels in 62.2% of the sample and loaded on both verbal and nonverbal factors. Conclusions: These patterns inform theories of nvASD by revealing an impairment that is not conceptualizable as one of expressive language only, sharply limits learning opportunities across the lifespan, and cannot be compensated for by nonverbal cognition. Implications: These findings stress the need to seize developmental opportunities that may disappear when youngsters turn into adults, via therapies that specifically target language as a central cognitive system comprising both production and comprehension.
dc.description.sponsorship This research was supported by a predoctoral research grant from Generalitat de Catalunya (AGAUR) & European Social Found (2018FI_B_00860, author DS), by an ‘advanced research group’ grant to the Grammar and Cognition Lab (2017 SGR 1265, author WH), and Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad (MINECO, Spanish Government), grants FFI2013-40526P and PID2019-105241GB-I00 (author WH).
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso eng
dc.publisher SAGE Publications
dc.relation.ispartof Autism and developmental language impairments. 2021;6(January-December):12p
dc.rights © The Author(s) 2021 This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons AttributionNonCommercial 4.0 License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
dc.rights.uri https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/
dc.title Relations between language, non-verbal cognition, and conceptualization in non- or minimally verbal individuals with ASD across the lifespan
dc.type info:eu-repo/semantics/article
dc.identifier.doi http://doi.org/10.1177/23969415211053264
dc.subject.keyword Non- or minimally verbal autism
dc.subject.keyword Language
dc.subject.keyword Nonverbal cognition
dc.subject.keyword Adults
dc.relation.projectID info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/ES/1PE/FFI2013-40526P
dc.relation.projectID info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/ES/2PE/PID2019-110120RB-I00
dc.rights.accessRights info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
dc.type.version info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion


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