Narrative comprehension in 4-7-year-old children with autism: testing the Weak Central Coherence account.
Despite somewhat spared structural language development in high-functioning autism, communicative comprehension deficits persist. Comprehension involves the integration of meaning: global processing is required. The Weak Central Coherence theory suggests that individuals with autism are biased to process information locally. This cognitive style may impair comprehension, particularly if inferencing is required. However, task performance may be facilitated by this cognitive style if local processing is required.