Usually the term ‘screening’ is used for a test/tool that is used for people with no suspicion of a condition to detect the possibility of that condition. Here, under the heading of screening, some tests/tools are being described that may help a practitioner decide whether or not to refer a child, who may have some concerns, for a detailed assessment of autism.
Two such tools for use with young children are:
This is a brief tool, based on replies by parents to brief questions. It can be used with minimal training for children of developmental age between 18 to 24 months. It can help provide a way of deciding who should be referred further for a detailed assessment. A PDF (English) can be obtained from http://docs.autismresearchcentre.com/tests/QCHAT-10.pdf ; the English and Hindi versions can be downloaded from
This is a bit more detailed tool with two step process of asking questions from parents and making some observations for children of developmental age between 16 to 30 months. It can also help provide a way of deciding who should be referred further for a detailed assessment. A PDF of M-Chat can be obtained from https://www.m-chat.org/_references/mchatdotorg.pdf
[i] Allison, C., Baron-Cohen, S., Wheelwright, S., Charman, T., Richler, J., Pasco, G., & Brayne, C. (2008). The Q-CHAT (Quantitative CHecklist for Autism in Toddlers): a normally distributed quantitative measure of autistic traits at 18–24 months of age: preliminary report. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 38(8), 1414-1425.
[ii] Robins, D. L., Fein, D., Barton, M. L., & Green, J. A. (2001). The Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers: an initial study investigating the early detection of autism and pervasive developmental disorders. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 31(2), 131-144.