Relations of Restricted and Repetitive Behaviors to Social Skills in Toddlers with Autism

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    We examined the relations of restricted and repetitive behaviors (RRB; insistence on sameness, repetitive sensory-motor, self-injurious behavior) to social skills overall and aspects that comprise social skills as measured by the VABS-II (coping skills, play/leisure time, interpersonal relationships) in 24- (n = 63) and 36-month old (n = 35), high-familial-risk toddlers with ASD. Hierarchical linear regression results indicated that repetitive sensory-motor was the best predictor of social skills overall. Secondary results indicated that all three RRB subtypes were associated with each subdomain of social skills; however, repetitive sensory-motor was the strongest and most consistent among these effects. While our results suggests a general negative relation of subtypes of RRB to aspects of adaptive social function, repetitive sensory-motor behaviors may be of particular relevance to the development of social skills during toddlerhood.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
    StateAccepted/In press - 2021


    • Autism
    • Insistence on sameness
    • Repetitive sensory-motor
    • Restricted repetitive behavior
    • Self-injurious behavior
    • Social skills

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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