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EVENT: Psychology Colloquium: Prof David Crewther: Causal Processes in autism

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Psychology Colloquium: Prof David Crewther: Causal Processes in autism Other events...
School of Health Sciences, Swinburne University of Technology

David started his career as a theoretical physicist, completing his PhD at Caltech under Nobel prize-winner Murray Gell-Mann. His interest in neurophysiology started there under the influence of Prof Jack Pettigrew. David's academic career has been diverse, successively at the National Vision Research Institute in Melbourne, the School of Optometry at the University of NSW in Sydney, the School of Psychological Science at La Trobe University in Melbourne and thence to the Brain Sciences Institute and Swinburne in 2000. He served as Director of the BSI from 2002-2004. He is currently Professor of Neuroscience in the Centre for Human Psychopharmacology at Swinburne. His academic interests include neural mechanisms of refractive control, neuroscience of normal and abnormal visual development, psychophysics of visual attention, non-linear electrophysiology and functional neuroimaging of cognitive function. He led the CogNOSS project to establish a MEG and fMRI neuroimaging facility under the one roof at Swinburne. His studies have implications particularly for development in children: dyslexia, amblyopia, autism, myopia and ADHD, as well as understanding of conscious awareness and mind/brain relations. David has published widely, mainly in the area of vision, visual development, myopia, single cell electrophysiology, evoked potential research, dyslexia, amblyopia, autism, and learning disability. David currently holds an Adjunct Professorship in Psychological Science at La Trobe University and is a visiting Research Professor at the 3rd Military Medical University of Chongqing, China.

Title: Causal processes in autism


Happe (2006) argued that there will be no single (genetic or cognitive) cause found for the diverse symptoms defining autism, on the basis of low correlations between its classic triad of behavioural symptoms. Despite this, there is growing evidence of a common visuotypy related to the degree of autistic tendency, even across the "normal" population, via Baron-Cohen's Autistic Spectrum Quotient (AQ). Electrophysiological and psychophysical evidence will be presented showing that autistic vision is characterized by an afferent magnocellular pathway abnormality. Also, evidence for deficiencies in global perceptual processing for those with high autistic tendency are manifest. The competition between global and local percept in the diamond illusion reveals a peripheral global neglect in those with high AQ, while with Navon figures, high AQ groups have difficulty in withdrawing attention from the salient local level when identifying the (incongruent) global level. To go from correlation to causation is quite a step. However, evidence from saccadic suppression experiments indicates a potential causal relation between saccadic suppression and local perceptual style. The implications for the development of core autistic symptoms are discussed.
Speaker(s) Prof David Crewther
Location Bayliss Lecture Theatre, Chemistry G.33
Contact Admin Psy <[email protected]edu.au> : 64883267
Start Tue, 31 Mar 2015 01:00
End Tue, 31 Mar 2015 02:00
Submitted by Admin Psy <[email protected]>
Last Updated Sat, 28 Mar 2015 16:14
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