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Do Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder Benefit from Structural Alignment When Constructing Categories?

J Autism Dev Disord. 2018 Apr 03;:

Authors: Snape S, Krott A, McCleery JP

Individuals with ASD seem to construct categories via processes different to typically developing individuals. We examined whether individuals with ASD engage in structural alignment of exemplars when constructing categories. We taught children with ASD and typically developing children novel nouns for either single or multiple exemplars, and then examined their extensions of the learned nouns to objects that were either a perceptual or conceptual match to the original exemplar(s). Results indicated that, unlike typically developing participants, those with ASD gained no benefit from seeing multiple exemplars of the category and, thus, did not appear to engage in structural alignment in their formation of categories. However, they demonstrated superior performance compared to typically developing children when presented with a single exemplar.

PMID: 29616485 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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