Objectives: Through careful selection of the subjects and revision of the assessment tools, this study intends to examine the differences between each developmental stage of ToM in school-age children with HFA, AS and ADHD in Taipei.
Methods: Fifteen HFA children (mean age=7.47), 15 AS children (mean age=8.13), 15 ADHD children (mean age=9.35) and 15 normal school-age children (mean age=7.47) were recruited from communities, hospitals, and elementary schools in the great Taipei area. Prior to the ToM test, parents were invited to complete the Childhood Autism Screening Questionnaire and the Abnormal Behavioral Screening Questionnaire. All the subjects were given the Chinese version of the WISC-III and a revised ToM
Results: After controlling for IQ, age and sex, the results revealed that children with HFA had significant lower ToM scores than children with AS, ADHD and normal children. The results also showed that children with AS and ADHD did not differ significantly from normal children.
Conclusions: The results indicated that HFA children had deficits in theory of mind abilities whereas children with AS and ADHD can develop theory of mind abilities normally.