Entry Date:
January 26, 2016

Interacting with dynamic objects in Autism Spectrum Disorders

Principal Investigator Pawan Sinha

Difficulties in interacting with dynamic objects can have grave consequences for autistic individuals. This project aims to investigate these abilities across a range of motor tasks to test whether the difficulties seen clinically result from an underlying impairment in temporal prediction. The project uses computer vision tools to create novel experimental protocols that yield rich quantitative data regarding movement of individuals relative to the objects in the environment, besides being safe and suitable for a broad spectrum of children. Our experimental suite spans motor tasks at different scales, ranging from fine eye-movements to gross whole-body motion. Deeper knowledge of the issue will have relevance for making environments safer for autistic children and adults, as well as for designing interventions that acknowledge and address the underlying neurocognitive issue (e.g., prediction), and not merely the manifestation of the underlying impairment (e.g., difficulty in catching a ball).