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Does Autism Affect Children’s Identification of Ownership and Defence of Ownership Rights?

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>30/11/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Issue number11
Number of pages12
Pages (from-to)4227-4238
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date25/01/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


This study investigated how autism spectrum disorder (ASD) impacts children’s ability to identify ownership from linguistic cues (proper nouns vs. possessive pronouns) and their awareness of ownership rights. In comparison to typically developing (TD) children matched on receptive language (M age equivalents: 53–56 months), children with ASD were less accurate at tracking owner-object relationships based on possessive pronouns and were less accurate at identifying the property of third parties. We also found that children with ASD were less likely to defend their own and others’ ownership rights. We hypothesise that these results may be attributed to differences in representing the self and propose that ASD may be characterised by reduced concern for ownership and associated concepts.