The Checklist for Autism in Toddlers (CHAT) is a screening instrument to identify young children at risk for developing autism. The intent is to identify children who might benefit from early interventions.


Patients: children 18 months of age


Behaviors seen in normally developing children but restricted in children with autism

(1) joint attention (ability to establish a shared focus of attention with another person by pointing, showing or gaze monitoring)

(2) pretend play (play involving the attribution of imaginary features to people, objects or events)



(1) questionnaire for parents

(2) observation by health care practitioner


Questions for Parent(s) - 9 questions


Observations by Practitioner - 5 questions


Responses: Yes or No

"No" Responses (Failures)

Risk of Autism

questions 5 and 7, AND observations 2, 3 and 4


question 7 AND observation 4


all other patterns



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