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Autism is an umbrella term for a range of neurological disorders characterised by severe and pervasive impairment in several areas of development including social skills, communication and repetitive behaviour.

Also known as autism spectrum disorders or autism spectrum conditions, autism includes Autistic disorder, Asperger syndrome, Childhood Disintegrative Disorder and Pervasive Developmental Disorder (Not Otherwise Specified)

The term autism is also sometimes used interchangeably with autistic disorder.

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About This Glossary

This glossary is designed to explain some of the jargon and gobbledygook used by some people when they talk about autism or research..

You may be able to find more information, including links to other parts of this website, by clicking on the title of an item.

If you know of any other items we should include in this section, please email info@informationautism.org.

Please note that we reserve the right not to include an item if we feel that it is not appropriate.


The fact that an intervention is listed in this glossary does not necessarily mean that we agree with its use. Nor does it necessarily mean that there is any scientifically valid or reliable evidence behind it.