Pragmatic language in autism: An overview

Yan Grace LAM

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapters


Pragmatics concerns with the acquisition of knowledge necessary for the appropriate and effective use of language in everyday social contexts. It is well known that pragmatic deficits are symptomatic of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders, but little is known about how they are related to the cardinal features of the disorders. In this chapter, studies on pragmatic behaviors specific to Autism Spectrum Disorders were reviewed. Issues pertaining to methodologies and interpretation of findings were addressed. Findings from previous studies were discussed in relation to the prevalent cognitive impairments and brain anomalies observed in Autism Spectrum Disorders. Future efforts should be directed to define the domain of inquiry as well as to develop tools that can detect pragmatic skills at different developmental stage. Copyright © 2014 Springer Science+Business Media New York.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationComprehensive guide to autism
EditorsVinood B. PATEL, Victor R. PREEDY, Colin R. MARTIN
Place of PublicationNew York
ISBN (Electronic)9781461447887
ISBN (Print)9781461447870
Publication statusPublished - 2014


Lam, Y. G. (2014). Pragmatic language in autism: An overview. In V. B. Patel, V. R. Preedy, & C. R. Martin (Eds.), Comprehensive guide to autism (pp. 533-550). New York: Springer.


  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Emotion perception
  • Weak central coherence
  • Pragmatic language
  • Brain anomaly


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