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Development of Episodic Memory and Foresight in High-Functioning Preschoolers with ASD

  • Mika NaitoEmail author
  • Chie Hotta
  • Motomi Toichi
Original Paper

Abstract

To investigate the early development of episodic memory and future thinking in autism spectrum disorder (ASD), we selected 94 participants each from a group of ASD and typically developing (TD) preschoolers. They were required to remember newly-acquired knowledge sources and anticipate action timings necessary for future events. Five-year-old children with ASD remembered their knowledge sources similar to TD children; however, the 6-year-old children performed more poorly than their TD counterparts. ASD children failed to anticipate future action timings in comparison with TD children. Although source memory and future thinking were related in TD children, they were unrelated in children with ASD. The results suggest that episodic memory and foresight are deficient and unintegrated in ASD children during the preschool years.

Keywords

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) Preschoolers Episodic memory Episodic future thinking Source memory 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The study was supported by the Organization for Promoting Neurodevelopmental Disorder Research. We are grateful to Remi Kosaka, Minori Nakamura, Seiko Nabatame, Eriko Gavinio for their help in data collection, and to Drs. Noriko Kimura and Sayaka Yoshimura for diagnosing children with ASD. We also thank the children, teachers, and principals at the nursery and primary schools in Yasu, Shiga, and Sakai, Osaka, Japan, for their cooperation.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Authors declare no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All study components received the approval of the university’s Institutional Review Board.

Informed Consent

The parents of all children released their informed consent for their children’s participation in the study and to the treatment of the data.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of School Education, Graduate School of School EducationJoetsu University of EducationJoetsuJapan
  2. 2.Department of EducationKansai University of Welfare ScienceKashiwaraJapan
  3. 3.Faculty of Human Health Science, Graduate School of MedicineKyoto UniversityKyotoJapan
  4. 4.The Organization for Promoting Neurodevelopmental Disorder ResearchKyotoJapan

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