Crister Nyberg, Amanda Ptolomey


The standard approach to conceptual understanding in the case of autism uses the distinction of abstract versus concrete thinking. This approach has its benefits but fails to explain all features of language use. For example, some concepts change their meaning in different contexts in contrast to concepts that are more rigid in their uses, such as mathematical concepts. This idea has its background in Minimalist theory of fiction (MTF), a theory that considers ‘skills to use words’ essential for understanding fiction, contrasting with theories that require pretending or make believe to understand fiction. From this background, the theory of Integrative Complexity (IC), and the method animating for practice, ICthinking®, can be of particular use to autistic people. The interventions develop meta-cognitive skills and are supportive of autistic people. From these starting points, we introduce new research hypotheses for developing educational methods especially for autistic people.

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autism, integrative complexity, metacognition, fiction

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