Distinctive Role of Symbolic Number Sense in Mediating the Mathematical Abilities of Children with Autism

Alexis Hiniker, Miriam Rosenberg-Lee, Vinod Menon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Despite reports of mathematical talent in autism spectrum disorders (ASD), little is known about basic number processing abilities in affected children. We investigated number sense, the ability to rapidly assess quantity information, in 36 children with ASD and 61 typically developing controls. Numerical acuity was assessed using symbolic (Arabic numerals) as well as non-symbolic (dot array) formats. We found significant impairments in non-symbolic acuity in children with ASD, but symbolic acuity was intact. Symbolic acuity mediated the relationship between non-symbolic acuity and mathematical abilities only in children with ASD, indicating a distinctive role for symbolic number sense in the acquisition of mathematical proficiency in this group. Our findings suggest that symbolic systems may help children with ASD organize imprecise information.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1268-1281
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Volume46
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016

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Aptitude
Autistic Disorder
Autism Spectrum Disorder

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Keywords

  • Autism spectrum disorders
  • Math ability
  • Number sense

Cite this

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Distinctive Role of Symbolic Number Sense in Mediating the Mathematical Abilities of Children with Autism. / Hiniker, Alexis; Rosenberg-Lee, Miriam; Menon, Vinod.

In: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, Vol. 46, No. 4, 01.04.2016, p. 1268-1281.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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