Theory of mind in non-retarded children with autism and Asperger's syndrome. A research note

J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 1996 Sep;37(6):759-63. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.1996.tb01469.x.


In the present study, 20 non-retarded children with autism and 20 non-retarded children with Asperger's syndrome, individually matched to the group of children with autism, participated. No statistically significant differences between the groups were found in the theory of mind tasks. In fact, the two groups performed almost as well as a group of normal children. These findings suggest that the theory of mind model has its limitations in explaining autism and that children with Asperger's syndrome are not more competent in theory of mind tasks than children with autism within the normal range of intelligence.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Autistic Disorder / diagnosis
  • Autistic Disorder / psychology*
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Intelligence
  • Intelligence Tests
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales