ANKARA UNIVERSITESI EGITIM BILIMLERI FAKULTESI OZEL EGITIM DERGISI-ANKARA UNIVERSITY FACULTY OF EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES JOURNAL OF SPECIAL EDUCATION, vol.21, no.1, pp.23-48, 2020 (Journal Indexed in ESCI)
In this study, gesture use of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD, 6 girls, and 24 boys) and typically developing children (TD, 13 girls, and 17 boys) between the ages of 11-72 months, and their mothers were compared to each other in social interaction (SI), joint attention (JA), behavior regulation (BR), and sum of all (SUM) gesture categories. The findings of the study showed that gesture use of children with ASD was lower in all gesture categories when compared to TD peers. Mothers of children with ASD displayed significantly lower levels of gesture use than mothers of TD children in the BR, SI, and SUM categories. When gesture use differences of children with ASD and TD children were examined as to whether their mothers were using the gestures, the findings showed that the differences in gesture use of children with ASD and TD children were independent from their mothers. On the other hand, when gesture use differences of mothers of children with ASD and mothers of TD children were examined as to whether their children were using the gestures, the results of the study showed that one of the sources of the differences in the SE and SUM gesture category scores of the mothers with ASD was the differences in the scores obtained from the gesture categories of the children. Study findings were discussed and suggestions for future research were provided.