Asperger Syndrome: Living outside the Bell Curve

By McConnaughy, Rozalynd | Journal of the Medical Library Association, January 2005 | Go to article overview

Asperger Syndrome: Living outside the Bell Curve


McConnaughy, Rozalynd, Journal of the Medical Library Association


Asperger Syndrome: Living Outside the Bell Curve. Aquarius Health Care Videos, 18 North Main Street, Sherborn, MA 01770; 888.440.2963; info@aquariusproductions.com; http://www.aquariusproductions.com; $125.00 including public performance rights; 18 minutes; VHS (not closed-captioned); 2004; ISBN: 1-58140-262-7.

Asperger syndrome (AS), one of the autistic spectrum disorders, is a pervasive developmental disorder characterized by an inability to understand how to interact socially. Characteristics of AS include clumsy and uncoordinated motor movements, limited interests or unusual preoccupations, repetitive routines or rituals, speech and language peculiarities, and nonverbal communication problems [1]. This eighteen-minute video uses interviews with twelve-year old Andrew Mozer, his parents, and Tina Iyama to provide an overview of AS. Iyama, physician with the University of Wisconsin Children's Hospital, discusses general features and characteristics of AS, while the footage of Andrew shows what an individual with this disorder is like.

The content is organized into the following sections: "How It Started," "How Did It Happen," "It's a Social Thing," "It's a 'Sensitive' Topic," "Bell Curve Challenges," and "Down the Road." This video does not spend much time on the diagnosis process. Children with AS are commonly diagnosed after the age of three. Andrew was diagnosed when he was in first grade. In addition to the interview clips with Andrew, footage is shown of Andrew at school and at home. Andrew has been working on his listening skills. Some children with AS need a teacher's aide, because they have trouble following verbal directions. Individuals with AS enjoy routine, and Iyama suggests foreshadowing changes that will take place in their schedules to help them adjust. Some individuals with AS are self-centered. …

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