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Brief report: how adolescents with ASD process social information in complex scenes. Combining evidence from eye movements and verbal descriptions

Freeth, M., Ropar, D., Mitchell, P., Chapman, P. and Loher, S. (2010) Brief report: how adolescents with ASD process social information in complex scenes. Combining evidence from eye movements and verbal descriptions. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. ISSN 0162-3257

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Abstract

We investigated attention, encoding and processing of social aspects of complex photographic scenes. Twenty-four high-functioning adolescents (aged 11–16) with ASD and 24 typically developing matched control participants viewed and then described a series of scenes, each containing a person. Analyses of eye movements and verbal descriptions provided converging evidence that both groups displayed general interest in the person in each scene but the salience of the person was reduced for the ASD participants. Nevertheless, the verbal descriptions revealed that participants with ASD frequently processed the observed person’s emotion or mental state without prompting. They also often mentioned eye-gaze direction, and there was evidence from eye movements and verbal descriptions that gaze was followed accurately. The combination of evidence from eye movements and verbal descriptions provides a rich insight into the way stimuli are processed overall. The merits of using these methods within the same paradigm are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: © 2010 Springer. This is an author produced version of a paper subsequently published online in Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders . Uploaded in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy.
Keywords: Transcript analysis; Eye tracking; Autism; Social scenes; Gaze following; Emotion processing
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Science (Sheffield) > Department of Psychology (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Miss Anthea Tucker
Date Deposited: 05 Jul 2010 09:43
Last Modified: 08 Feb 2013 17:00
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10803-010-1053-4
Status: Published
Publisher: Springer
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1007/s10803-010-1053-4
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/11006

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