Managing complexity: impact of organization and processing style on nonverbal memory in autism spectrum disorders

Author: Tsatsanis, K.D.; Noens, I.L.J.; Illmann, C.L.; Pauls, D.L.; Volkmar, F.R.; Schultz, R.T.; Klin, A.

Description: The contributions of cognitive style and organization to processing and recalling a complex novel stimulus were examined by comparing the Rey Osterrieth Complex Figure (ROCF) test performance of children, adolescents, and adults with ASD to clinical controls (CC) and non-impaired controls (NC) using the Developmental Scoring System. The ROCF task involves a complex structure with strong organizational or integrative processing demands. The individuals with ASD relied on a predominantly part-oriented strategy to cope with the complexity of the task and did not make the typical developmental shift to a configurational approach. Both processing style and organization (whether pieces of information were perceived as connected to one another in a meaningful way) contributed to structural recall in the ASD group.

Subject headings: Adolescent; Age Factors; Case-Control Studies; Child; Child Development Disorders, Pervasive–psychology; Cognition; Executive Function; Female; Humans; Male; Memory; Mental Recall; Psychological Tests; Autism

Publication year: 2011

Journal or book title: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

Volume: 41

Issue: 2

Pages: 135-147

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Type: Journal Article

Serial number: 62