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Social affiliation motives modulate spontaneous learning in Williams syndrome but not in autism

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Background: Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and those with Williams syndrome (WS) have difficulties with learning, though the nature of these remains unclear.

Methods: In this study, we used novel eye-tracking and behavioral paradigms to measure how 36 preschoolers with ASD and 21 age- and IQ-matched peers with WS attend to and learn novel behaviors (1) from the outcomes of their own actions (non-social learning), (2) through imitation of others’ actions (social learning), and across situations in which imitative learning served either an instrumental function or fulfilled social affiliation motives.

Results: The two groups demonstrated similar abilities to learn from the consequences of their own actions and to imitate new actions that were instrumental to the achievement of a tangible goal. Children with WS, unlike those with ASD, increased their attention and imitative learning performance when the model acted in a socially engaging manner.

Conclusions: Learning abnormalities in ASD appear to be linked to the social rather than instrumental dimensions of learning.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Average duration of fixations to the model’s face (experiment 2) *p = .005
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Fig3: Average duration of fixations to the model’s face (experiment 2) *p = .005

Mentions: First, participants’ visual attention to the model’s face (quantified in terms of average duration of fixations to the face region) was analyzed with a 2 (group) × 2 (condition) ANOVA. There was a main effect of the group (F (1, 48) = 12.61, p = .001, ηp2 = .20), condition (F (1, 48) = 5.03, p < .05, ηp2 = .09), and a significant group × condition interaction (F (1, 48) = 5.77, p < .05. ηp2 = .10). As illustrated in Fig. 3, the children with ASD looked significantly less at the model’s face than those with WS. Further, pair-wise comparisons showed that while participants in the WS group increased their attention to the model’s face in the socially engaging condition compared with the neutral condition (adjusted p [Bonferroni] = .005, ηp2 = .15), this was not the case in the ASD group (adjusted p = .89, ηp2 = .00).Fig. 3


Social affiliation motives modulate spontaneous learning in Williams syndrome but not in autism
Average duration of fixations to the model’s face (experiment 2) *p = .005
© Copyright Policy - OpenAccess
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5015226&req=5

Fig3: Average duration of fixations to the model’s face (experiment 2) *p = .005
Mentions: First, participants’ visual attention to the model’s face (quantified in terms of average duration of fixations to the face region) was analyzed with a 2 (group) × 2 (condition) ANOVA. There was a main effect of the group (F (1, 48) = 12.61, p = .001, ηp2 = .20), condition (F (1, 48) = 5.03, p < .05, ηp2 = .09), and a significant group × condition interaction (F (1, 48) = 5.77, p < .05. ηp2 = .10). As illustrated in Fig. 3, the children with ASD looked significantly less at the model’s face than those with WS. Further, pair-wise comparisons showed that while participants in the WS group increased their attention to the model’s face in the socially engaging condition compared with the neutral condition (adjusted p [Bonferroni] = .005, ηp2 = .15), this was not the case in the ASD group (adjusted p = .89, ηp2 = .00).Fig. 3

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Background: Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and those with Williams syndrome (WS) have difficulties with learning, though the nature of these remains unclear.

Methods: In this study, we used novel eye-tracking and behavioral paradigms to measure how 36 preschoolers with ASD and 21 age- and IQ-matched peers with WS attend to and learn novel behaviors (1) from the outcomes of their own actions (non-social learning), (2) through imitation of others&rsquo; actions (social learning), and across situations in which imitative learning served either an instrumental function or fulfilled social affiliation motives.

Results: The two groups demonstrated similar abilities to learn from the consequences of their own actions and to imitate new actions that were instrumental to the achievement of a tangible goal. Children with WS, unlike those with ASD, increased their attention and imitative learning performance when the model acted in a socially engaging manner.

Conclusions: Learning abnormalities in ASD appear to be linked to the social rather than instrumental dimensions of learning.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus