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Type of Measure: Early Screening of Autistic Traits (ESAT) is a 14-item primary screening checklist that was designed for infants 0-36 month(s) old. It is based on prominent early signs and symptoms of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and was designed to be completed by parents/caregivers during well-baby visits. Failure on three or more items indicates the need for further evaluation.

Target Population: May be administered to infants 0-36 month(s) old, but primarily targets infants 14-15 months of age.

Measurement properties and previous use: Test-retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient) was assessed using retrospective data for children clinically diagnosed with ASD (r = 0.81, p<0.01). Level of functioning was significantly correlated with total number of negative answers on the ESAT (r = 0.56, p<0.01). The authors also investigated how well the ESAT discriminated between children with ASD with a high level of functioning and a non-selected population. The authors report that the ESAT has high specificity to differentiate normal from abnormal developement and less specificity in distinguishing between ASD and other types of abnormal development.

Languages: English

Authors and Citation:
Swinkels, S. H., Dietz, C., van Daalen, E., Kerkhof, I. H., van Engeland, H., & Buitelaar, J. K. (2006). Screening for autistic spectrum in children aged 14 to 15 months. I: the development of the Early Screening of Autistic Traits Questionnaire (ESAT). Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 36(6), 723-732.

Licence: The ESAT is not a commercial product and can be found in its entirety below.

Link to measure: Early Screening of Autistic Traits (ESAT)

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