Journal of Autism

Journal of Autism

ISSN 2054-992X
Original Research

Weak Central Coherence Contributes to Social Perceptual Deficits in autism

M.D Rutherford*, Nidhi Trivedi, Patrick J. Bennett and Allison B. Sekuler

*Correspondence: M.D Rutherford

Department of Psychology, Neuroscience and Behaviour, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


The weak central coherence theory of autism originally suggested that people on the autism spectrum focus on features rather than perceiving a global gestalt. To test whether central coherence theory is relevant to social perception in autism, we tested whether global processing on a non-social task was associated with global processing on a social task. Fourteen adults with autism and 14 matched controls completed a Navon task and an emotion perception task with a point light-walker display. Across both groups as well as within the autism group, there was a correlation between global processing in the Navon task and the social task. This association that global processing may underpin performance on both tasks.

Keywords: Autism Spectrum Disorders, Central Coherence Theory, Navon Task, Social Perception

ISSN 2054-992X
Volume 7
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