Attention to eyes and mouth in high-functioning children with autism

Yair Bar-Haim*, Cory Shulman, Dominique Lamy, Arnon Reuveni

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations

Abstract

In the present study, we used a probe-detection task to compare attentional allocation to the eyes versus mouth regions of the face in high-functioning boys with autism relative to normal control boys matched for chronological age and IQs. We found that with upright faces, children from both groups attended more to the eyes region than to the mouth region, and to the same extent. This pattern of behavior was observed for not only initial orientation of attention, but also when enough time was provided for attention to be disengaged from its initial locus. The present findings suggest that atypical face processing in autism does not result from abnormal attentional allocation to the different face parts.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)131-137
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Volume36
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2006

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was partially supported by The Israeli Science Foundation (grant No. 989/03).

Keywords

  • Attention
  • Autism
  • Dot probe
  • Eyes
  • Face processing
  • Probe detection

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