Autism Spectrum Disorder

Eye tracking is used to study the differences in social interaction and visual precursors to attention in social contexts between typically developing children and children with autism spectrum disorder. Researchers hope to discover the earliest indicators of autism in order to help diagnosis and inform interventions.

Gaze analysis in diagnosis process

The diagnosis of autism depends on the judgments of symptoms listed in the diagnostic criteria. Gaze analysis is an additional tool for experts to use in the diagnosis process. In recent years, unobtrusive eye tracking systems without chin rests or movement-restricting headgear have become increasingly accurate. These advancements in technology have made collecting the gaze data of infants and young children as easy as studying adults.

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Baby in front of an eye tracker used for child development research

Tobii Pro eye trackers are known for their exceptional tolerance of substantial, dynamic head movement which allows for minimal restrictions on the subjects' natural actions. This makes them ideal for infant and child studies, as well as atypical populations.

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Autism Spectrum Disorder and Language Development

New York University’s Learn Lab uses eye tracking to study the learning mechanisms underlying language acquisition in children who are typically developing as well as children on the autism spectrum. Read more

Uppsala University

Eye tracking is used in developmental psychology to explain infants' growth and transformation in cognitive, social and emotional abilities. Researchers use eye tracking to study the differences in social interactions in children with typical development and children with autism.  Read more

Osaka University

Researchers at Osaka University developed a quantitative method for identifying individuals with autism by analyzing temporo-spatial gaze patterns, which could help experts diagnose the issue earlier. Read more

  • Dollion, N., Toutain, M., François, N., Champagne, N., Plusquellec, P., & Grandgeorge, M. (2021). Visual Exploration and Observation of Real-Life Interactions Between Children with ASD and Service Dogs. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 51(11), 3785–3805.
  • Boxhoorn, S., Bast, N., Supèr, H., Polzer, L., Cholemkery, H., & Freitag, C. M. (2019). Pupil dilation during visuospatial orienting differentiates between autism spectrum disorder and attention‐deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, jcpp.13179.
  • Murias, M., Major, S., Davlantis, K., Franz, L., Harris, A., Rardin, B., Sabatos-DeVito, M., & Dawson, G. (2017). Validation of eye-tracking measures of social attention as a potential biomarker for autism clinical trials: Utilizing eye-tracking as a social communication biomarker for ASD. Autism Research.