Trying to find the Autism: Theory of Mind

We have had our son tested every few years to see how he is doing/progressing.

I did let the testers know that he had a diagnosis of Autism, but I did not give them the actual tests to look at as I wanted their unbiased assessment on how he was doing at the time of the test.

The past summer (2011) we had him tested by the school district.  They ran all the typical Autism tests, they tested his sensory issues, they even tested his cognitive abilities this time as he was able to read and could get more thorough testing than in previous years.  They then decided to test his speech as well.  We had a total of 5 appointments to complete the variety of tests.

About a week or so after the last test we had the results appointment.  They found that his mispronunciation of the letter “L” was not age appropriate and he qualified for 1 hour per week of speech to address this.

Huh?

Ok and………?   Nothing.  No autism.  No Pdd.  No Aspergers.  Not on the spectrum.  No part time in the Special needs classroom.  No aid or shadow.  Nothing.

There are a lot of parents who claim their child is recovered and I do not make that claim as I can still see a few things that make him look slightly different from his peers (some slight oddness in the way his arms move when he runs, some precocious language, and a sporadically his tone is, well, odd).  So recovered? No, but is there any Autism?

Well another parents mentioned the Sally and Ann test for theory of mind, so I did this with him, fully expecting him to fail.  He passed.  He passed both what is she thinking and what does he think she is thinking.  Wow!

I decided to go a bit further this past week and really see if I could find the Autism.

I searched online and found a variety of links for theory of mind sample tests and questions.  I read him all the questions I could find. In all he took 5 tests and he passed he missed all of 2 questions.  He got questions correct that were labeled as memory (of course this is to be expected as it has always been his strong suit), TOM1, TOM2, and TOM4.

Now these were just internet sample test given by his Mom, but I tend to be hard.  I did not give him any clues or repeat options when he got one wrong.  I was really looking for some measure to go by to watch these last skills come online.  See we started by using the ATEC (his first score was132), when he scored 0 on that we went to the child brain pdd test.  he started in the 70’s on that test.  When that went to 0 I had nothing else to use, this is what prompted me to look for these TOM questions.  Now I am just at a loss.

I can see the Autism in his slight oddness of posture and word/phrase selection, but I can’t seem to get a handle on anything else.

Could that really be all we have left to address………………………?  I suppose only time will tell.

http://www.staff.ncl.ac.uk/daniel.nettle/liddlenettle.pdf

http://www.iidc.indiana.edu/?pageId=424

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/aspergers-diary/200805/empathy-mindblindness-and-theory-mind

http://psych.wisc.edu/lang/pdf/Gernsbacher_autistic_modules.pdf

http://www.staff.ncl.ac.uk/daniel.nettle/liddlenettle.pdf

One thought on “Trying to find the Autism: Theory of Mind

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