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IQ Scores Fail to Predict Academic Performance in Children with Autism

New data show that many children with autism-spectrum disorders have greater academic abilities than previously thought.

In a study from the University of Washington, 90 percent of high-functioning children with autism-spectrum disorders sometimes did better on reading, match and spelling tests than their IQ score predicted.

The study was published online recently in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

The study did not look at the students’ performance in school, a next step for the researchers.

“We need to know if children with autism- spectrum disorders who have these higher-than-expected scores are able to demonstrate their abilities in the classroom in terms of grades and other measures of success,” Estes says. “This could influence placement in classes that adequately challenge them.”

—Kathy Sena

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