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Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability characterized by deficits in social communication, social interaction, social-emotional reciprocity, and in developing and maintaining relationships. In addition, individuals with ASD often display restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities that interfere with their ability to interact and learn from others (Diagnostic Statistical Manual, 5th edition, 2013). These deficits inhibit an individual’s daily living and persist across their lifespan. ASD is considered a “spectrum disorder” that affects individuals differently and to varying degrees. According to the Centers for Disease Control, ASD affects an estimated 1 in 59 children in the United States today.


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