- Created by: nurture4lyf
- Created on: 28-09-17 19:56
The theory of mind provides a cognitive explanation for autism development. It implies that children have the inability to infer emotion and cannot identify that other people think differently to them. The theory of mind develops at around the age of 3. This is usually shown in children that cannot recognise people's emotions e.g. sadness by crying. Blocked development of speech can also suggest autism if it is not present by the age of 3.
A strength of this explanation is that the research focuses on young children. This is because children develop information in their critical period as a young child. This is better than using adults as extraneous variables and social response bias is more likely to be present in their results affecting the validity of the results.
Supporting evidence for the ToM comes from Osterling & Dawson. They found that a lack of attention towards the facial expression of others was the best predictor for future diagnosis of autism. This is a…