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01-11-2009 | Original Paper | Uitgave 11/2009

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 11/2009

The Children’s Empathy Quotient and Systemizing Quotient: Sex Differences in Typical Development and in Autism Spectrum Conditions

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders > Uitgave 11/2009
Auteurs:
Bonnie Auyeung, Sally Wheelwright, Carrie Allison, Matthew Atkinson, Nelum Samarawickrema, Simon Baron-Cohen
Belangrijke opmerkingen
This study was conducted at the Autism Research Centre, University of Cambridge, UK. A portion of this work was submitted in part fulfillment of the degree of B.Sc. in the Department of Experimental Psychology, Cambridge University by NS and MA.

Abstract

Children’s versions of the Empathy Quotient (EQ-C) and Systemizing Quotient (SQ-C) were developed and administered to n = 1,256 parents of typically developing children, aged 4–11 years. Both measures showed good test–retest reliability and high internal consistency. As predicted, girls scored significantly higher on the EQ-C, and boys scored significantly higher on the SQ-C. A further sample of n = 265 children with Autism Spectrum Conditions (ASC) scored significantly lower on the EQ-C, and significantly higher on the SQ-C, compared to typical boys. Empathy and systemizing in children show similar patterns of sex differences to those observed in adults. Children with ASC tend towards a ‘hyper-masculinized’ profile, irrespective of sex.

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