Author Information

Aurora Baraiolo


Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disability that affects a child’s social interactions and ability to communicate and develop language. In the United States, approximately 1 in 68 children are diagnosed with ASD, and ASD is becoming more prevalent (Darcy-Mahoney, 2016). Data show that about 1 in 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls are diagnosed with ASD. Prevalence among different races is not statistically significant (Caucasian 1 in 65; African American, 1 in 76; Asian/Pacific Islander, 1 in 88; Hispanic, 1 in 99) (National Institute of Mental Health, 2016). At the core of ASD are deficits in language development, social communication, social interaction and the presence of restricted, repetitive behaviors (American Speech-Language Hearing Association, 2017). It often hinders a child’s ability to connect with others, read, write, follow directions, and develop expressive and receptive language. Children with ASD often use echolalia or repeat words or phrases to communicate with caregivers.

Note on the Author

Aurora Baraiolo graduated from Bridgewater State University in May 2019 with a Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders and minors in Special Education Professional Practices and Psychology. Her research project was completed in the Summer of 2018 under the mentorship of Dr. Suzanne Miller (Communication Sciences and Disorders) and made possible by an Adrian Tinsley Program (ATP) for Undergraduate Research summer grant. Aurora presented this research at the ATP Symposium in 2018.

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