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Language software promises to help children with autism

Language software promises to help children with autism

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Scientific Learning is offering new software it says can help improve language and communication skills in children with autism.

Oakland, Calif.-based firm Scientific Learning on Friday announced the launch of new software it says can help improve language and communication skills in children with autism.

Called BrainPro Autism, the new software is made up of game-like exercises coupled with remote monitoring by a seasoned tutor who relays progress to the child’s team of specialists on a weekly basis.

In fact, SmartPlanet was the first publication to write about the software.

Here's our video from last week:

[video=6259527]

Autism, short for Autism Spectrum Disorder, is a developmental condition that appears in the first three years of life. Not much is known about how or why it occurs but it's known to affect the brain's development of social and communication skills -- an isolating effect later in life.

Scientific Learning says its software focuses on fostering expressive and receptive language, helping children with autism advance overall language ability by one year.

“We now know from brain scans that the long pathways in the brain don’t form adequately in people with autism so, for example, the area that governs speech doesn’t connect with the area that controls auditory processing,” said Martha Burns, a speech language pathologist and senior clinical specialist at Scientific Learning.

Chart: Scientific Learning

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Andrew Nusca

Editor Emeritus

Andrew Nusca is editor of SmartPlanet and an associate editor for ZDNet. Previously, he worked at Money, Men's Vogue and Popular Mechanics magazines. He holds degrees from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and New York University. He is based in New York but resides in Philadelphia. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure