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Title: Mentalising on the broader autism phenotype : a global or modular impairment?
Author: Wisley, Mary
ISNI:       0000 0004 2750 345X
Awarding Body: University of Glasgow
Current Institution: University of Glasgow
Date of Award: 2013
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Background: Previous research has shown that children with a diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome or High Functioning Autism (AS/HFA) have difficulty with mentalising tasks. There is also limited evidence that siblings may also have subtle deficits in ‘theory of mind’ consistent with a broader autistic phenotype model. This study aims to investigate whether deficits in mentalising about others is specific to sensory modality (modular) or mediated by a global impairment in mentalising. Methods: Thirteen children who had a sibling with AS/HFA were compared to thirteen children who did not, matched on age, gender and verbal IQ. Children completed a range of self and other mentalising tasks. RESULTS: No significant differences in mentalising were detected between the groups. Descriptive statistics indicated a trend for male siblings to have higher AAQ scores and longer mean response times on the RME than female siblings and controls. Conclusions: Larger samples and replication would be required to ascertain whether any significant impairment in mentalising about others across modalities is present in siblings, and to clarify the impact of gender and social learning theory. Formal modification of the auditory test (RMV) for younger children would be helpful in order to robustly compare differences in performance across modalities both within and between groups.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology ; RJ101 Child Health. Child health services