A simple two-minute test may be able to detect autism in toddlers earlier than ever before.

Researchers examined 1959 children, between 18 and 36-months-old, as part of a study published in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioural Paediatrics, shares Yahoo.

The Psychological Development Questionnaire (PDQ-1) had an 88 per cent likelihood of correctly identifying which of the youngsters screened positive.

Those who received low PDQ-1 scores were considered to be at risk of autism and were referred for evaluation to determine if they might be on the spectrum.

“The availability of valid and efficient screeners, like the PDQ-1, may enhance our ability to detect ASD in young children and expand the number of youngsters receiving early intervention,” Associate Professor at Rutgers University and lead author of the study, Walter Zahorodny said.

“If we want to improve early detection, easy-to-use and reliable autism screeners need to be widely used.”

The test asks parents to answer ‘yes’, ‘no’, or ‘sometimes’ to ten questions about their child, including whether the child responds to their name, enjoys playing peek-a-boo and relates to others.

autism test

If you are concerned about your child please make an appointment and discuss your concerns with your doctor.

Do you think it could really be that simple to pick up?

Share your comments below.

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  • I would have thought they would have needed an in depth and thorough test.


  • Too simple for a complicated problem. Some kids are just quirky and get labelled too early.. And unless the government provides the support it won’t achieve anything.


  • Some children with Autism don’t talk at all unless they have extensive speech therapy. In USA if diagnosed as toddlers they can start short therapy sessions at the age of 2 y.o. (I know of a boy who started therapy at that age). In Adelaide they will not assess a child until the age of 5 and they start school. I know of a case where the family knew there was definitely problems and tried to get answers earlier so they could make some progress before their little boy started school. He has very few therapy sessions compared to what he should have too.

    • Younger children are able to access speech pathology assessments through their local health centre or alternatively, you can access a private speech pathologist.


  • This simply test might help you to seek professional help earlier, which is always good !


  • Seems a little too simple. As they say, if it seems too good to be true, it usually is


  • I’ve heard stories of toddlers who did these things and then just stopped and ended up being diagnosed with autism. I think it’s a good pre-test to see if you need to be concerned about anything but you need to seek help quickly if worried.


  • Not so sure. It also depends a lot on what the parents perceive. Some behaviours could pass unnoticed to some parents. While other parents could overestimate the occurrence of certain behaviours.


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