Correlação entre os resultados de avaliações neuropsicológicas e o desempenho em discriminação condicional com crianças com Transtorno do Espectro do Autismo
Oliveira, Sabrina David de
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Neuropsychology is a science that allows one to draw the profile of cognitive impairment and skills preserved in order to design possible treatments and appropriate educational practices, aiming for better quality of life of the individual. Among the cognitive abilities investigated by neuropsychology, executive functions refers to a system that manages the cognitivebehavioral resources, with the purpose of behavior planning and regulation. This study is a correlational basic research aimed to verify whether the results found in neuropsychological evaluations of executive functions in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are predictive of or show any correlation with the performance of these children in conditional discrimination via identity matching-to-sample (MTS) tasks. A battery of neuropsychological tests were used to evaluate executive function to identify participants’ existing and missing skills, with possible quantification and qualification of the results. The tests used were Wisconsin, Test Tracks Pre-School, Corsi blocks and Attention Test for Cancellation. A portable microcomputer and the Master computer program were used to present MTS tasks. The participants were 13 children with ASD, aged 4 to 12 years, regularly enrolled in a Special Institution / Regular Education School. The correlations revealed significant associations between neuropsychological tests and MTS tasks performance. In general, it was observed that the lower the performance in Test Wisconsin, more perseverative responses were presented and higher correlation was found with the MTS tasks. It was also observed that the better the performance in the Cancellation and trails tests, better performance on MTS tasks. The attention and cognitive flexibility may be pre-requisites for better performances in MTS tasks. Future research could further explore the MTS tasks for evaluation of cognitive and attentional flexibility and intervention of individuals with ASD. Another possibility is to check whether training with several exemplars of identity MTS would improve performance on neuropsychological tests.