- Verbal fluency in children with autism spectrum disorders: clustering and switching strategies
- Volume | Issue number
- 18 | 8
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
This study highlights differences in cognitive strategies in children and adolescents with and without autism spectrum disorders (n = 52) on a verbal fluency task (naming as many words as possible (e.g. animals) within 60 s). The ability to form clusters of words (e.g. farm animals like "cow-horse-goat") or to switch between unrelated words (e.g. "snake" and "cat") was analyzed using a coding method that more stringently differentiates between these strategies. Results indicated that children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders switched less frequently, but produced slightly larger clusters than the comparison group, resulting in equal numbers of total words produced. The currently used measures of cognitive flexibility suggest atypical, but possibly equally efficient, fluency styles used by individuals with autism spectrum disorders.
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