Brief Report: IQ Split Predicts Social Symptoms and Communication Abilities in High-Functioning Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
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We investigated the relationship of discrepancies between VIQ and NVIQ (IQ split) to autism symptoms and adaptive behavior in a sample of high-functioning (mean FSIQ = 98.5) school-age children with autism spectrum disorders divided into three groups: discrepantly high VIQ (n = 18); discrepantly high NVIQ (n = 24); and equivalent VIQ and NVIQ (n = 36). Discrepantly high VIQ and NVIQ were associated with autism social symptoms but not communication symptoms or repetitive behaviors. Higher VIQ and NVIQ were associated with better adaptive communication but not socialization or Daily Living Skills. IQ discrepancy may be an important phenotypic marker in autism. Although better verbal abilities are associated with better functional outcomes in autism, discrepantly high VIQ in high-functioning children may also be associated with social difficulties.
KeywordsAutism Cognitive profiles IQ Symptomatology Adaptive functioning Asperger syndrome
The authors thank Jennifer A. Silvers, Laura Case, and Anne Della Rosa for their work compiling data and the many children with ASD and their families who made this research possible. The authors also thank Alex Martin for his helpful comments on an earlier draft of this paper. This research was supported in part by the Intramural Program of the NIH, National Institutes of Mental Health. This work was supported by the Studies for the Advancement of Autism Research and Treatment (STAART: NIMH U54 MH066417) for supporting data collection.
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