Categorical induction abilities are robust in typically developing (TD) preschoolers, while children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) frequently perform inconsistently on tasks asking for the transference of traits from a known category member to a new example based on shared category membership. Here, TD five-year-olds and six-year-olds with ASD participated in a categorical induction task; the TD children performed significantly better and more consistently than the children with ASD. Concurrent verbal and nonverbal tests were not significant correlates; however, the TD children's shape bias performance at two years of age was significantly positively predictive of categorical induction performance at age five. The shape bias, the tendency to extend a novel label to other objects of the same shape during word learning, appears linked with categorical induction ability in TD children, suggesting a common underlying skill and consistent developmental trajectory. Word learning and categorical induction appear uncoupled in children with ASD.