Date of Thesis

5-4-2015

Thesis Type

Honors Thesis (Bucknell Access Only)

Degree Type

Bachelor of Science

First Advisor

Aaron Mitchel

Abstract

The ability to integrate multisensory stimuli is variable amongst individuals and corresponds to one's ability to bind temporally proximate audio and visual stimuli (Stevenson, Zemstov, & Wallace, 2012). In addition, multisensory integration and temporal binding are affected in those with autism spectrum disorder (Foss-Feig et al., 2010; De Pape et al., 2012). Further, temporal binding is variable within an individual as a function of the types of stimuli being perceived (Dixon & Spitz, 1980). Previous research has uncovered a relationship between sub-clinical ASD-like social traits and temporal binding windows; however, this line of research has not investigated whether ASD-like social traits have differing effects on temporal binding for various modes of stimuli. In this study, we investigate the impact of ASD-like social traits on temporal binding windows (TBW) for three modes of audio-visual stimuli: flash-beep, hammer-nail, and speech. TBWs were found by presenting a subject with a range of stimulus onset asynchronies for each form of stimuli. The subjects were then administered a social responsiveness scale test to determine their ASD-like traits. Although, there was no correlation between subclinical ASD-like traits and increased TBW for any of the stimuli domains, a correlation was observed amongst the TBWs for the three stimuli modalities. These results support a stimulus general account of multisensory perception. Future work will look to address the explanations for a lack of correlation between subclinical ASD-like traits and TBW width.

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