Cultural basis of social ‘deficits’ in autism spectrum disorders

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    There is very little research that specifically looks at how autism spectrum disorders are perceived in various communities. This qualitative research was conducted with parents who had children on the autistic spectrum belonging to four different ethnic communities (White British, Somali, West African and South
    Asian – 63 in total) and living in the UK. The study found that the importance
    that the parents give to various social skills varied on the basis of their cultural
    background and the gender of the parent. This is an important aspect to consider while providing support and services to individuals on the autism spectrum and their family members if the services have to be appropriate for their needs. This consideration would also enable the individuals on the autism spectrum to develop appropriate social skills required within their cultural groups. This is a preliminary study and further research on the topic is required.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)313-326
    Number of pages14
    JournalEuropean Journal of Special Needs Education
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 29 Apr 2014


    • autism
    • Social skills
    • Parental perceptions
    • culture
    • ethnicity


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