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ERIC Number: EJ959111
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Mar
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 45
ISSN: ISSN-1362-3613
Shall We Do This Together? Social Gaze Influences Action Control in a Comparison Group, but Not in Individuals with High-Functioning Autism
Schilbach, Leonhard; Eickhoff, Simon B.; Cieslik, Edna C.; Kuzmanovic, Bojana; Vogeley, Kai
Autism: The International Journal of Research and Practice, v16 n2 p151-162 Mar 2012
Perceiving someone else's gaze shift toward an object can influence how this object will be manipulated by the observer, suggesting a modulatory effect of a gaze-based social context on action control. High-functioning autism (HFA) is characterized by impairments of social interaction, which may be associated with an inability to automatically integrate socially relevant nonverbal cues when generating actions. To explore these hypotheses, we made use of a stimulus-response compatibility paradigm in which a comparison group and patients with HFA were asked to generate spatially congruent or incongruent motor responses to changes in a face, a face-like and an object stimulus. Results demonstrate that while in the comparison group being looked at by a virtual other leads to a reduction of reaction time costs associated with generating a spatially incongruent response, this effect is not present in the HFA group. We suggest that this modulatory effect of social gaze on action control might play an important role in direct social interactions by helping to coordinate one's actions with those of someone else. Future research should focus on these implicit mechanisms of interpersonal alignment ("online" social cognition), which might be at the very heart of the difficulties individuals with autism experience in everyday social encounters. (Contains 2 tables and 2 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Germany
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Beck Depression Inventory