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Exploring the Influence of Object Similarity and Desirability on Children’s Ownership Identification and Preferences in Autism and Typical Development

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

E-pub ahead of print
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>23/03/2022
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Publication StatusE-pub ahead of print
Early online date23/03/22
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

This study investigated how ownership identification accuracy and object preferences in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are influenced by visual distinctiveness and relative desirability. Unlike typically developing (TD) children matched on receptive language (M age equivalents: 58.8–59.9 months), children with ASD had difficulty identifying another person’s property when object discriminability was low and identifying their own relatively undesirable objects. Children with ASD identified novel objects designated to them with no greater accuracy than objects designated to others, and associating objects with the self did not bias their preferences. We propose that, due to differences in development of the psychological self, ownership does not increase the attentional or preferential salience of objects for children with ASD.