A1 Journal article (refereed)
Minimalist theory of fiction and the ICthinking® method as a background for new insights to autism (2021)

Nyberg, C., & Ptolomey, A. (2021). Minimalist theory of fiction and the ICthinking® method as a background for new insights to autism. European Journal of Special Education Research, 7(1), 70-80. https://doi.org/10.46827/ejse.v7i1.3598

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Nyberg, Crister; Ptolomey, Amanda

Journal or series: European Journal of Special Education Research

eISSN: 2501-2428

Publication year: 2021

Publication date: 24/02/2021

Volume: 7

Issue number: 1

Pages range: 70-80

Publisher: Open Access Publishing Group

Publication country: Romania

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.46827/ejse.v7i1.3598

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Open Access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/77384


The standard approach to conceptual understanding in the case of autism uses the distinction of abstract versus concrete thinking. This approach has its benefits but fails to explain all features of language use. For example, some concepts change their meaning in different contexts in contrast to concepts that are more rigid in their uses, such as mathematical concepts. This idea has its background in Minimalist theory of fiction (MTF), a theory that considers ‘skills to use words’ essential for understanding fiction, contrasting with theories that require pretending or make believe to understand fiction. From this background, the theory of Integrative Complexity (IC), and the method animating for practice, ICthinking®, can be of particular use to autistic people. The interventions develop meta-cognitive skills and are supportive of autistic people. From these starting points, we introduce new research hypotheses for developing educational methods especially for autistic people.

Keywords: autism; cognitive development; language development; metacognition; theory of mind; fiction; concepts (notions); meanings (semantics); language-games

Free keywords: autism; integrative complexity; metacognition; fiction

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2021

JUFO rating: 1

Last updated on 2022-14-09 at 12:45