Early Predictors of Growth in Diversity of Key Consonants Used in Communication in Initially Preverbal Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Tiffany Woynaroski, Linda Watson, Elizabeth Gardner, Cassandra R. Newsom, Bahar Keceli-Kaysili, Paul J. Yoder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Scopus citations


Diversity of key consonants used in communication (DKCC) is a value-added predictor of expressive language growth in initially preverbal children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Studying the predictors of DKCC growth in young children with ASD might inform treatment of this under-studied aspect of prelinguistic development. Eighty-seven initially preverbal preschoolers with ASD and their parents were observed at five measurement periods. In this longitudinal correlational investigation, we found that child intentional communication acts and parent linguistic responses to child leads predicted DKCC growth, after controlling for two other predictors and two background variables. As predicted, receptive vocabulary mediated the association between the value-added predictors and endpoint DKCC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1013-1024
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2016



  • Autism
  • Consonant inventory
  • Intentional communication
  • Parent linguistic responses
  • Predictors
  • Receptive vocabulary
  • Vocal communication

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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