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Executive function, theory of mind and social problem solving in Asperger's syndrome

Heap, Jane; (1999) Executive function, theory of mind and social problem solving in Asperger's syndrome. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

A group of 15 adolescents with a diagnosis of Asperger's syndrome were compared with a group matched for language ability, IQ and age on measures of theory of mind, executive function and a measure of social problem solving. The social problem solving measure has been developed as a measure of real life type problem solving ability. The Asperger's group were significantly impaired compared to the control group on some measures of executive function, namely those involving planning and set shifting. They were also impaired on some measures of theory of mind, namely story comprehension. Within the social problem solving measure, the Asperger's group were significantly impaired on number of solutions they generated and the quality of those solutions. The quality of the solutions was significantly impaired in relation to the social appropriateness measure. The results were considered in the context of theory of mind deficit and executive dysfunction accounts of autism and Asperger's. Partial support was found for both accounts, but an executive deficit account was considered the more parsimonious explanation of the findings.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: Executive function, theory of mind and social problem solving in Asperger's syndrome
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Psychology; Autism spectrum disorders
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10107538
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