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Adults with Autism Tend to Undermine the Hidden Environmental Structure: Evidence from a Visual Associative Learning Task.

J Autism Dev Disord. 2018 Apr 13;:

Authors: Sapey-Triomphe LA, Sonié S, Hénaff MA, Mattout J, Schmitz C

Abstract
The learning-style theory of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) (Qian, Lipkin, Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 5:77, 2011) states that ASD individuals differ from neurotypics in the way they learn and store information about the environment and its structure. ASD would rather adopt a lookup-table strategy (LUT: memorizing each experience), while neurotypics would favor an interpolation style (INT: extracting regularities to generalize). In a series of visual behavioral tasks, we tested this hypothesis in 20 neurotypical and 20 ASD adults. ASD participants had difficulties using the INT style when instructions were hidden but not when instructions were revealed. Rather than an inability to use rules, ASD would be characterized by a disinclination to generalize and infer such rules.

PMID: 29654451 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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