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Abbreviations & Internet Know-How

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Abbreviations are often used for medical and educational terms. This can be very confusing to parents at the beginning of a new process where the words and terms are still unfamiliar. We have listed many of them below to help you learn more about Autism Spectrum Disorders.

  • AAC - Augmentative and   Alternative Communication
  • ADA - American with Disabilities Act
  • ADD - Attention Deficit Disorder
  • ADHD - Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
  • AE - Age Equivalent
  • AIT - Auditory Integration Therapy
  • AS - Asperger's Syndrome
  • ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder
  • ASL - American Sign Language
  • ASPIE -A person with Asperger's Syndrome
  • BD/ED -Behavior Disordered / Emotionally Disturbed
  • BOCES - Board of Cooperative Educational Services
  • BOE - Board of Education
  • BP - Bi-Polar (formerly manic-depressive)
  • CAPD - Central Auditory Processing Disorder
  • CNS - Central Nervous System
  • CPSE - Committee on Preschool Special Education
  • CSE - Committee on Special Education
  • DD - Developmental Disability
  • DSM-IV - Diagnostic Statistical Manual (edition IV)
  • DX - Diagnosis
  • ED - Emotionally Disturbance
  • FAPE - Free and Appropriate Public Education
  • FERPA - Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
  • HFA - High Functioning Autism
  • IDEA - Individuals with Disabilities Act
  • IEP - Individualized Education Program
  • IH - Impartial Hearing
  • IQ - Intelligence Quotient
  • LD - Learning Disability (Learning Disabled)
  • LRE - Least Restrictive Environment
  • MR -Mentally Retarded (IQ less than 70)
  • MRI -Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • NOS -Not Otherwise Specified, usually seen as PDD-NOS
  • NT -Neurotypical
  • OCD -Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • ODD -Oppositional-Defiant Disorder
  • OHI - Other Health Impaired
  • OT -Occupational Therapy
  • PDD -Pervasive Developmental Disorder
  • PET -Positron Emission Tomography
  • PT - Physical Therapy
  • SAD -Seasonal Affective Disorder
  • SED - State Education Department
  • SEIT - Special Education Itinerant Teacher Services
  • SETRC - Special Education Training Resource Centers
  • SI - Speech Impaired
  • TBI - Traumatic Brain Injury
  • TDD - Telecommunication Devices for the Deaf
  • TEACCH -Treatment & Education of Autistic & Related Communication Disorders
  • TOM -Theory of Mind
  • TS -Tourette's Syndrome
  • VESID - Office of Vocational & Educational Services for Individuals with Disabilities
  • VI - Visually Impaired
  • VR - Vocational Rehabilitation
  • WISC -Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children
  • Yo -Year Old

As a service to our users, we provide the following list of commonly-used internet abbreviations:

ROFL -Rolling On Floor Laughing
FWIW -For What It's Worth
BTW -By The Way
GSOH -Good Sense Of Humour
OSOSBSU -Oops, straying off subject, better shut up
LOL -Laugh Out Loud
AFAIK -As Far As I Know
IMHO -In My Humble Opinion
IMO -In My Opinion
IOW -In Other Words
SPAM - Single Point Addressed Multiply
<g> grin
<wg> Wide grin
:-) happy
:-( sad
:-> very happy
:-< terribly sad
:-0 laughing
:'-( crying
:-P sticking tongue out
:-O yawning
B-) I wear glasses
:-* kiss
?:-o surprise
{} hugs
;-) wink
:-x say nothing
£-) greedy

If you are going to use the Internet, you can save yourself a lot of time and trouble by learning the rules of "Netiquette," such as not using all-capital letters unless you really mean to look like you're shouting, and always lurking for a while to learn the rules (and the ropes) before making yourself known. There are many guides to Netiquette on the World Wide Web, including this one. Or do a Yahoo search for Netiquette to find others.


AHA/AS/PDD does not endorse or recommend any product or treatment. This site is intended for informational purposes only. Please consult with experienced professionals to determine the most effective treatment for your own child as each child and situation are unique.
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