Presentation Title

Correlation between visual perspective taking and cognitive theory of mind in neurotypical children and children with ASD

Abstract

Autism Spectrum Disorder(ASD) is defined by deficit in social communication along with repetitive and restricted interests and behaviors. Children with ASD often struggle with Theory of mind (ToM). ToM is an important developmental stage. It includes skills such as thinking from other’s perspective, emotion recognition and false beliefs. ToM can be further divided into two parts: cognitive ToM and affective ToM. Many previous studies show a relationship between visual perspective taking and ToM. I take it further and examine correlation between visual perspective taking, cognitive ToM and affective ToM. The study compares result of Autistic children with matched neurotypical children. Cube design, a subtest of Unit-2 intelligence test, measures visual perspective taking skill. ToM Task Battery (ToM TB) assesses development in cognitive ToM, affect ToM and ToM as a whole. Scores on two line of sight questions, level 1 of visual perspective taking, are separately recorded and analyzed. Autistic group presents an association between score on cube design and cognitive ToM. The control group demonstrates that line of sight relates to cognitive ToM. Since both cube design and line of sight represent aspects of visual perspective taking, in conclusion, visual perspective taking skill strongly associates with development in cognitive ToM.

Primary Faculty Mentor Name

Patricia A. Prelock

Status

Undergraduate

Student College

College of Arts and Sciences

Program/Major

Psychological Science

Primary Research Category

Social Sciences

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Correlation between visual perspective taking and cognitive theory of mind in neurotypical children and children with ASD

Autism Spectrum Disorder(ASD) is defined by deficit in social communication along with repetitive and restricted interests and behaviors. Children with ASD often struggle with Theory of mind (ToM). ToM is an important developmental stage. It includes skills such as thinking from other’s perspective, emotion recognition and false beliefs. ToM can be further divided into two parts: cognitive ToM and affective ToM. Many previous studies show a relationship between visual perspective taking and ToM. I take it further and examine correlation between visual perspective taking, cognitive ToM and affective ToM. The study compares result of Autistic children with matched neurotypical children. Cube design, a subtest of Unit-2 intelligence test, measures visual perspective taking skill. ToM Task Battery (ToM TB) assesses development in cognitive ToM, affect ToM and ToM as a whole. Scores on two line of sight questions, level 1 of visual perspective taking, are separately recorded and analyzed. Autistic group presents an association between score on cube design and cognitive ToM. The control group demonstrates that line of sight relates to cognitive ToM. Since both cube design and line of sight represent aspects of visual perspective taking, in conclusion, visual perspective taking skill strongly associates with development in cognitive ToM.