Goal-directed and goal-less imitation in autism spectrum disorder

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    376 Downloads (Pure)


    To investigate how people with Autism are affected by the presence of goals during imitation, we conducted a study to measure movement kinematics and eye movements during the imitation of goal-directed and goal-less hand movements. Our results showed that a control group imitated changes in movement kinematics and increased the level that they tracked the hand with their eyes, in the goal-less compared to goal-direction condition. In contrast, the ASD group exhibited more goal-directed eye movements, and failed to modulate the observed movement kinematics successfully in either condition. These results increase the evidence for impaired goal-less imitation in ASD, and suggest that there is a reliance on goal-directed strategies for imitation in ASD, even in the absence of visual goals. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1739-1749
    Number of pages10
    JournalJournal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2012


    • Autism spectrum disorder
    • Eye movements
    • Imitation
    • Motor control
    • Sensorimotor integration


    Dive into the research topics of 'Goal-directed and goal-less imitation in autism spectrum disorder'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this