DYNAMIC SOCIAL PERCEPTION IN ADULTS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS
Ring, Hannah R
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurological condition that is typically diagnosed by the age of three-years-old. ASD can have a profound life-long impact on social perception, the maintenance of relationships, and communication abilities (Marshall et al., 2008). These impairments have been associated with issues with Theory of Mind (ToM), perspective taking, and executive dysfunction, as well as structural brain differences when compared to neurotypical adults. The ToM account is most important for our research question, and it states that individuals with autism are often unable to attribute mental states to themselves and/or others. This deficit is apparent through a failure to take other people’s mental states into account (Frith, 1989). While many studies, such as Whyte and Nelson (2015), have described the effects of ASD on social perception in children, there is a lack of research involving adults with ASD. Additionally, there is a need for assessment and training tools that encompass ecologically valid, dynamic stimuli. A video inventory (Relational Inference in Social Communication or RISC) to test the perception of social intentions such as sarcasm, teasing, and prosocial lies allows for the investigation of interpersonal communication in both neurotypical adults and clinical populations. The current study used a subset of RISC videos to examine how adults with ASD and neurotypical adults understand nonliteral language and social intentions. We analyzed how individual differences in empathy and perspective-taking influence the way adults with ASD evaluate social intentions using a set of standard questionnaires. We had a small sample size of only two participants that allowed for descriptive analysis of data. As expected, those with ASD showed a deficit in recognizing the speaker's intention, especially with negative intentions. The empathy scores demonstrated that those with ASD have more difficulty understanding the emotions of others (cognitive empathy) rather than sharing the emotion (affective empathy).
Ring, Hannah R. (May 2021). DYNAMIC SOCIAL PERCEPTION IN ADULTS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS (Honors Thesis, East Carolina University). Retrieved from the Scholarship. (http://hdl.handle.net/10342/9195.)
Ring, Hannah R. DYNAMIC SOCIAL PERCEPTION IN ADULTS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS. Honors Thesis. East Carolina University, May 2021. The Scholarship. http://hdl.handle.net/10342/9195. September 27, 2023.
Ring, Hannah R, “DYNAMIC SOCIAL PERCEPTION IN ADULTS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS” (Honors Thesis., East Carolina University, May 2021).
Ring, Hannah R. DYNAMIC SOCIAL PERCEPTION IN ADULTS WITH AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDERS [Honors Thesis]. Greenville, NC: East Carolina University; May 2021.
East Carolina University