Each child with a diagnosis of autism will have varying abilities with language and communication. If you know more than one child with autism, you will know that their communication and language abilities and features will be very different.
It is important to understand the difference between expressive and receptive communication skills, because all children with autism will have some degree of challenge/ delay in one or both of these areas:
Expressive communication: using language and verbal or non-verbal communication to convey a message.
Receptive language: understanding words, language and communication as a receiver of a communicative message.
Furthermore, research suggests that children with autism have challenges related to:
Joint attention: the ability to co-ordinate attention between people and objects
Symbol use: learning and understanding conventional or shared meanings for symbols (a symbol being anything that conveys a meaning, for example; a sound, a gesture or a word).
Be clear in your use of language
Tips for Communicating with a Child with Autism