The term developmental therapy refers to a set of therapies intended to directly address the core deficits of autism, i.e. difficulties with social and communication skills and emotional engagement. It is also very child-specific, and requires a great deal of involvement, effort, and creativity on the part of parents.
Developmental therapy stands in contrast to a number of other more traditional therapies:
- behavioral therapy
- pharmaceutical intervention
- biomedical intervention
- speech therapy
- physical therapy
- occupational therapy (OT)
The about.com article linked below is the source for all of the above and is good reading.