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01-11-2008 | Brief Report | Uitgave 10/2008

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 10/2008

Brief Report: Narratives of Personal Events in Children with Autism and Developmental Language Disorders: Unshared Memories

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders > Uitgave 10/2008
Sylvie Goldman
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This paper is based on a dissertation submitted by the author in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the PhD degree in Psychology at The Graduate Center of The City University of New York. Portions of this research were presented at a joint meeting of the Symposium on Research in Child Language Disorders and the International Congress for the Study of Child Language. Madison, WI, in July 2002.


Narrative analysis of personal events provides an opportunity for identifying autism specific issues related to language and social impairments. Eight personal events were elicited from three groups of schoolage children: 14 high-functioning with Autism Spectrum Disorders (HFA), 12 non-autistic with developmental language disorders (DLD), and 12 typically developing matched for chronological age and non-verbal IQ. The coding focused on narrative format (constituents) and style (coherence). The analyses indicate basic knowledge of conventional narrative format in all groups but a consistent lack of high-point in HFA children’s stories interpreted as a consequence of their lack of social understanding of narrative. The results suggest novel interventions to foster autobiographical memory in HFA children which may assist in their self-awareness development.

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