Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 49, Issue 1, pp 422–428 | Cite as

Brief Report: Flanker Visual Filtering Ability in Older Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder

  • Kelly M. Boland
  • Janine P. Stichter
  • David Q. Beversdorf
  • Shawn E. ChristEmail author
Brief Report


Recent research has documented impaired ability to resist interference from visual distractors in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and suggests that this phenomenon may be more pronounced in young versus older children (Christ et al., Neuropsychology 25(6):690–701, 2011). The present study extends previous findings by examining visual filtering inhibitory ability within an older adolescent population. A flanker visual filtering task was administered to 36 adolescents with ASD and 44 adolescents without ASD (age: 11–20 years). Analysis revealed no evidence of group differences in visual filtering performance. Taken together with previous research, these results suggest that during early adolescence the previously observed impairment may resolve or compensatory strategies develop, allowing individuals with ASD to perform as well as their neurotypical peers.


Autism Visuoperception Inhibitory control Executive function Development Inhibition 


Author Contributions

KB contributed to the analysis, interpretation, and writing up of the present dataset. All remaining others (JS, DB, and SC) contributed to the design, implementation, and write up. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.


This research was supported by grants from the University of Missouri Research Board, Autism Speaks (Grant 2718), and the University of Missouri Thompson Center Scholar Program.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this paper.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained for all individuals prior to participation.


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Copyright information

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

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Psychological SciencesUniversity of MissouriColumbiaUSA
  2. 2.Thompson Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental DisordersUniversity of MissouriColumbiaUSA
  3. 3.Department of Special EducationUniversity of MissouriColumbiaUSA
  4. 4.Department of RadiologyUniversity of MissouriColumbiaUSA

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