Showing posts with label Aspergers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Aspergers. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Autism research bibliography

Over the past year there has been a steady increase in people who have contacted me to ask my opinion regarding CHC-based assessment of individuals with autism. I respond honestly ....saying that I have spent little time studying this specific developmental disability. Today I decided to run a search of my IAP Reference see what literature I might skim to "get up to speed." I was amazed at the number of references I had accumulated over the past few years (over 400). This is definitely a hot topic of contemporary research.

I've decided to make the result of my search available to others. Click here if you want to view/download/print a copy.

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Monday, January 29, 2007

Austism, in my language-powerful video

Thanks to Mind Hacks for the link to the very powerful video apparently created by a young woman with autism...a video where she "translates" from her world of environmental interaction to the more "typical" world of speech and perception imposed upon her by the rest of the world. Very powerful.

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Monday, January 22, 2007

Asperger's and executive functioning

I ran across an interesting small-sample (but well controlled with subject matching) study in the recent issue of Neuropsychologia re: possible impairments in executive processes/function (EF) in adults with Asperger's Syndrome. The article presents a nice summary (in table form) of prior matched-control studies that have examined the performance of individuals with Asperger's on many classic executive function measures (e.g., Wisconsin Cart Sort Test; Delis-Kaplan).

The most important finding from this study is the possibility that specific EF deficits (viz., response initiation and intentionality, in particular the ability to engage and disengage actions in the service of overarching goals),may be associated with Asperger's, but this may not have emerged in prior research that has used traditional EF measures. IN particular, the authors identify two less frequently used EF measures (Behavioral Assessment of Dysexecutive Syndrome, BADS; Hayling Test) as being potentially important for clinicians to evaluate for possible diagnostic use.

  • Hill, E. Bird, C. (2006) Executive processes in Asperger syndrome: Patterns of performance in a multiple case series Neuropsychologia,44, 2822–2835 (click here to view)
  • Mixed evidence exists for executive dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). This may be because of the nature of the tasks used, the heterogeneity of participants, and difficulties with recruiting appropriate control groups. A comprehensive battery of ‘executive’ tests was administered to 22 individuals with Asperger syndrome and 22 well-matched controls. Performance was analysed both between groups and on an individual basis to identify outliers in both the ASD and control groups. There were no differences between the groups on all ‘classical’ tests of executive function. However, differences were found on newer tests of executive function. Specifically, deficits in planning, abstract problem solving and especially multitasking. On the tests that discriminated the groups, all of the ASD individuals except one were identified as significantly impaired (i.e. below the 5th percentile of the control mean) on at least one executive measure. This study provides evidence for significant executive dysfunction in Asperger syndrome. Greatest dysfunction appeared in response initiation and intentionality at the highest level—the ability to engage and disengage actions in the service of overarching goals. These deficits are best observed through using more recent, ecologically valid tests of executive dysfunction. Moreover, performance on these measures correlated with autistic symptomatology.

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