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    Appearance-based trust behaviour is reduced in children with autism spectrum disorder

    Ewing, Louise and Caulfield, F and Read, A and Rhodes, G (2015) Appearance-based trust behaviour is reduced in children with autism spectrum disorder. Autism 19 (8), pp. 1002-1009. ISSN 1362-3613.

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    Typical individuals make rapid and reliable evaluations of trustworthiness from facial appearances, which can powerfully influence behaviour. However, the same may not be true for children with autism spectrum disorder. Using an economic trust game, the current study revealed that like typical children, children with autism spectrum disorder rationally modulate their trust behaviour based on non-face cues to partner trustworthiness (e.g. reputation information). Critically, however, they are no more likely to place their trust in partners with faces that look trustworthy to them, than those that look untrustworthy. These results cannot be accounted for by any group differences in children’s conceptualization of trustworthiness, ability to read trustworthiness from faces or understanding of the experimental paradigm. Instead, they seem to suggest that there may be a selective failure to spontaneously use facial cues to trustworthiness to guide behaviour in an ecologically valid context.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): autism spectrum disorders, cognition (attention, learning, memory), school-age children, social cognition and social behaviour
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2014 14:16
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:14


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