Theory of Mind training in children with autism: a randomized controlled trial

S.M. Begeer, C. Gevers, P. Clifford, M. Verhoeve, K. Kat, E. Hoddenbach, F. Boer

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Many children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) participate in social skills or Theory of Mind (ToM) treatments. However, few studies have shown evidence for their effectiveness. The current study used a randomized controlled design to test the effectiveness of a 16-week ToM treatment in 8-13 year old children with ASD and normal IQs (n = 40). The results showed that, compared to controls, the treated children with ASD improved in their conceptual ToM skills, but their elementary understanding, self reported empathic skills or parent reported social behaviour did not improve. Despite the effects on conceptual understanding, the current study does not indicate strong evidence for the effectiveness of a ToM treatment on the daily life mindreading skills. © 2010 The Author(s).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)997-1006
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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