Explaining Autism using biological concepts

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  • Created by: lilly557
  • Created on: 13-04-14 22:33

What is Autism

Autisim is a development disorder and it affects more males than females. The ratio is 10-males:1 female. 

The biological explanation for autism is the extreme male brain explanation. This suggests that autistic brains are heavier than those without Autism. 

  • Have a smaller corpus collosum 
  • a larger amydala 

These are all features of male brains but are exaggerated more in Autistic Brains. 

Characteristics that define Autism are: 

  • difficulty in communication 
  • find it hard to make friends 
  • like routine 
  • non-serve social withdrawal 
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Evaluation of the biological explanation for autis


  • Loads of scientifc evidence to support theory behind the contibutions

These are: brain scans which can be used to verify the differences in brain structure and function of those with and without autism. 

  • The extreme male brain explanation fits with many of the characteristics of autism and other males such as:

higher ability at visuo-spatial tasks


 low empathising ( this all suggests that this explanation has validty

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Evaluation of the biological explanation for autis


  • takes a reductionalist view by only considering one aspect that may contribute to autism. E.g. environmental factors may be dismissed 
  •  the extreme brain explanation of autism may help contribute to understand about the disorder however it doesn't actually offer any theraphies or treatments. This could be because the brain is a fix structure that cannot be altered in contrast to an envriomental factor which would allow this treatment. 
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