Pattern of Syntactic Profile in Children with Autism: A Study on the Relation between Reception and Expression of Syntax

  • Hourieh Ahadi Assistant Professor, Department of Practical Linguistic, School of Linguistic, Institute for Humanities and Cultural Studies, Tehran, Iran
  • Maryam Mokhlesin Lecturer, Department of Speech Therapy School of Rehabilitation, Neuromuscular Rehabilitation Research Centre, Semnan University of Medical Sciences, Semnan, Iran
  • Behrooz Mahmoodi-Bakhtiari Associate Professor and Head, Department of Performing Arts, School of Art and Music, College of Fine Arts, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran
Keywords: Autism spectrum disorder, Expression, Comprehension, Syntax


Introduction: Language impairment is a primary characteristic of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, findings of language deficits in these children have been inconclusive, and many researchers believe that in such children the pattern of language profiles is different from normal children. To determine this pattern, comprehension and expression of syntax were examined in 10 Persian speaking children at ages 6-9. Children with autism were compared to normal groups on the basis of their age and language.Material and Methods: In this study, research data were collected of 10 children with autism and 20 normal cases (10 age-matched and 10 language-matched). Gilliam Autism Rating Scale- 2 and the Autism Spectrum Screening Questionnaire were used for diagnosis of children with autism, and test of language development was used to determine their language scores. Afterward, reception of syntactic structures was assessed using the Persian syntax comprehension test, and expression of it was also evaluated using a Persian photographic grammar expression test. Finally, the data were analyzed by Kolmogorov–Smirnov, Mann–Whitney, and Wilcoxon tests.Results: Comparing the total scores shows that in normal groups, there was a significant difference between receptive and expressive of syntax both in terms of the number of correct tasks and number of correct structures. However, in the study group, such a difference was only seen in the number of correct tasks. Comparison of reception and expression of different structures in all groups showed that there was a significant difference between receptive and expressive tasks of subject relative clause in children with autism and language-matched group. However, in age-matched group, such a difference was not noticed. As to the grammatical relations such as aspect, tense and superlative adjectives, there were no significant differences between receptive and expressive tasks of any groups. Finally, there was a significant difference in terms of using of independent pronouns just in group of children with autism.Conclusion: Overall, it can be concluded that comparing total scores of difference between reception and expression does not suffice for making a hypothesis that in ASD comprehension of all structures is more difficult than their expression because their performance in different structures of syntax is variant.Keywords: Autism spectrum disorder; Expression; Comprehension; Syntax


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How to Cite
Ahadi H, Mokhlesin M, Mahmoodi-Bakhtiari B. Pattern of Syntactic Profile in Children with Autism: A Study on the Relation between Reception and Expression of Syntax. jmr. 10(3):98-03.
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