Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 37, Issue 2, pp 197–209 | Cite as

Response Times of Children and Adolescents with Asperger Syndrome on an ‘Advanced’ Test of Theory of Mind

  • Nils Kaland
  • Lars Smith
  • Erik Lykke Mortensen
Original paper


In the present study the response times of 10- to 20-year-old participants with Asperger syndrome (AS) (N = 21) of normal intelligence and a control group of typically developing individuals (N = 20) were recorded on a new ‘advanced’ test of theory of mind. This test taps the ability to make mental-state inferences versus physical-state inferences in a story context. The participants with AS were significantly slower than the controls on both tasks. In addition, the differences in response times between mental- and physical-state inference were significantly larger in the AS group than in the control group, suggesting that the clinical group experienced more problems than the controls in making inferences about mental states than about physical states.


Asperger syndrome Response time Theory of mind An ‘advanced’ test of theory of mind Mental-state vs. physical-state inference 



Asperger syndrome


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nils Kaland
    • 1
  • Lars Smith
    • 2
  • Erik Lykke Mortensen
    • 3
  1. 1.Faculty of Social SciencesLillehammer University CollegeLillehammerNorway
  2. 2.Institute of PsychologyUniversity of OsloOsloNorway
  3. 3.Department of Health Psychology, Institute of Public HealthUniversity of CopenhagenCopenhagenDenmark

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