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Title: Emotional recognition, executive function and pragmatic communication in children with a diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Disorder
Author: Wright, Jennifer
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2005
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This study aimed to examine the links between executive function (EF), emotional recognition, and pragmatic communication, in children with a diagnosis of ASD. It also compared the performance of the children with ASD with the performance of typically developing children on each of the tests. It was an experimental study with both a between subjects and a correlational design. Twenty children, aged 6-15 years, with a diagnosis of ASD comprised the experimental group. The groups were matched on gender, chronological age and IQ. Both groups were tested using the Tower subtest of the NEPSY (Korkman et al., 1998), an emotional recognition test, using Ekman and Friesen’s Facial Effect Slides (1976). Parents were asked to complete the Children’s Communication Checklist (CCC-2: Bishop, 2003), in order to gain a score for pragmatic communication. The results showed that children with ASD performed more poorly on tests of EF, emotional recognition and pragmatic communication compared to controls, suggesting that children with ASD have relative deficits in these areas. In addition, a significant positive correlation was found between emotional recognition and EF in the ASD group. No other correlations were found, in either of the groups. In conclusion, the results support previous research, that EF could be one of the primary cognitive deficits in individuals with ASD.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available