Date of Completion
Honors College Thesis
Neuroscience; Communication Sciences & Disorders
Honors College, College of Arts and Science Honors
ASD, Autism, EEG, Coherence, Semantics, Neuroscience
Language deficits are a pertinent and characteristic feature of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), particularly in higher-level functions like semantic processing. Compared to the typically developing (TD) population, people with ASD have shown significant differences in neural semantic processing activity after the presentation of a stimulus. However, lower-level functions like word decoding are typically intact, suggesting a disconnect between these two processing levels in the brain. Theta coherence has been linked to the presence of such lower-level, pre-semantic activity in the TD population. The present study used electroencephalography (EEG) to measure the presence of theta coherence and examine the pre-semantic neural connectivity of participants with ASD to determine whether early disruptions might contribute to semantic misunderstandings. Gaining a better understanding of neural communication during pre-semantic processing would further the current understanding of language impairments in ASD and could also lead to more targeted and effective therapies.
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Curl, Azilee J. Miss, "Theta Wave Coherence in Pre-Semantic Processing: An EEG study of Autism Spectrum Disorder" (2020). UVM Honors College Senior Theses. 339.