Luckett, T.; Powell, S. D.; Messer, D.; Thornton, M. E. and Schulz, J.
Do children with autism who pass false belief tasks understand the mind as active interpreter?
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 32(2),
Interpretive diversity is the term used by Carpendale and Chandler (1996) to refer to the fact that two individuals exposed to precisely the same stimulus may interpret it in quite different, but equally plausible, ways. An appreciation of interpretive diversity is said by Carpendale and Chandler to represent a development in understanding that is qualitatively different from that necessary to succeed on false belief tasks. A study is reported in which children with autism and children with general delay were given a battery of tasks consisting of false belief tasks and tasks designed to test for an understanding of interpretive diversity. Findings from the present study offer limited support for Carpendale and Chandler's claim that tasks which test for an understanding of interpretive diversity may be more difficult than false belief tasks. Between-group differences in the consistency and quality of responses given by participants suggest that autistic and delayed children may have differed somewhat in their approach to the tasks given.
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