Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 49, Issue 2, pp 460–467 | Cite as

Task Dependency When Evaluating Association Between Facial Emotion Recognition and Facial Emotion Expression in Children with ASD

  • Andrea Trubanova WieckowskiEmail author
  • Deanna M. Swain
  • A. Lynn Abbott
  • Susan W. White
Original Paper


The impact of facial emotion recognition (FER) deficits on facial emotion expression (FEE) during interaction with a novel computerized system was investigated in children with ASD (n = 20), in comparison to typically developing (TD) peers (n = 20). Although there was not clear evidence of impaired FEE, children with ASD showed more atypical FEE. In children with ASD, better FER predicted better FEE when the participants were asked to express a labeled emotion (t(18) = − 2.75, p = .01, d = 1.24). The stronger relationship between FER and FEE in children with ASD, relative to controls, suggests that intervention targeting social communication deficits might have maximal effect when both processes are considered.


Facial emotion recognition Facial emotion expression Social communication Autism spectrum disorder 



This project was funded by a Grant from NICHD (R03HD081070; Co-PIs Abbott & White).

Author Contributions

ATW participated in the Collected data, performed data analysis and drafted the manuscript. DMS participated in the Collected data, performed data analysis and contributed to writing of the manuscript. ALA Contributed to planning and design of the study and revision of the manuscript. SWW Conceived the study, designed the study, contributed to writing of the draft and revision of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrea Trubanova Wieckowski
    • 1
    Email author
  • Deanna M. Swain
    • 1
  • A. Lynn Abbott
    • 2
  • Susan W. White
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyVirginia TechBlacksburgUSA
  2. 2.Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringVirginia TechBlacksburgUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyThe University of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA

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