ISSN: 1935-1232 (P)

ISSN: 1941-2010 (E)



The Mind Theory in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD): A Narrative Review
Author(s): Payam Khalafi*, Mitra Joudi, Nozhan Alimi and Ali Massoudifar

Background and aim: Due to the numerous problems of patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) due to lack of proper understanding of the minds of others as well as their minds, the purpose of this study is to review the theory of mind and related factors and its influence (especially the role Education) in patients with ASD.

Materials and methods: For this purpose, all studies related to the subject, during 1991-2021, were systematically searched in internationally available databases, including Web of Science, Science Direct, Scopus, PubMed, and Google Scholar. Finally, 21 completely relevant studies were selected to extract the results.

Results: Children with autism, compared to normal children, have significant defects in developing different levels of theory of mind. According to the results of most studies, children with ASD received the lowest score in the whole test and the sub-levels of mind theory tests, while the highest score was assigned to normal (healthy) children. In addition, mind theory-based education can increase different levels of mind theory in children with ASD.

Conclusion: It can be concluded that ASD causes severe damage to the functions of social cognition, especially the theory of mind in patients, based on study results. However, in early childhood, these patients' adverse effects on social cognition and mind theory functions can be reduced by providing efficient and effective education.