"Hidden Challenges: Visual and Motor Symptoms in Autism Spectrum Disorder"
Monday, Apr. 19, 2021
Presented by Haylie Miller, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Michigan School of Kinesiology
For decades, the focus of research and clinical care in the autism spectrum disorder (ASD) community has been on social-communication symptoms. However, children and adults with ASD also face hidden challenges with vision and movement. These challenges go beyond social use of gaze or repetitive motor behaviors, and extend to basic use of gaze to track moving objects, maintain balance, and plan and execute goal-directed movements. Visual and motor problems have a notable impact on functional ability, quality of life, and health. Though these have been documented by clinicians and reported by self-advocates and caregivers, there are still few options for targeted visuomotor assessment and intervention.
Emerging technologies like virtual reality, mobile eye-tracking, and machine learning offer new opportunities for development of multi-modal tools for precise assessment of the relationship between vision and movement. These integrated approaches can be used to translate research on visuomotor problems into more effective lifespan interventions for ASD and related populations.