'The relation between driving errors and executive functioning in intellectually able young novice drivers with autism' Apr 03, 2019
dr. Veerle ROSS
Just now the scientific article titled 'The relation between driving errors and executive functioning in intellectually able young novice drivers with autism' was published on ScienceDirect. This article is written by one of the research groups at the Transport Research Institute. Up until May 23rd 2019 you can read this online article free of charge.
The article focusses on the driving behaviour of young novice drivers with autism, more specifically it elaborates on their executive functioning and the driving errors they make on the road.
Publishing house Elsevier aims to encourage the spread of scientific articles. Therefore they offer all newly published online articles for free during a 50-day period.
Driving is a complex, goal-directed task. ASD can be related to impairments in executive functioning (EF), which may interfere with driving. This study aimed to investigate (1) if 16 young novice drivers with ASD exhibited a divergent performance on EF tests compared to 18 neurotypical peers, (2) if ASD participants exhibited a divergent driving performance compared to their neurotypical peers, and (3) if differences in driving performance would be related by the performance on the EF tasks. All participants completed a driving simulator scenario and computer-task battery. Driving error classification allowed the selection of several driving measures (e.g., collisions, speeding). Three EF tasks measuring working memory (WM), attention, and response inhibition were included. Results indicated lower WM and attention performance of the ASD participants compared to the control group, whereas response inhibition was similar across groups. Furthermore, the current study demonstrated that people with ASD can be considered as capable drivers once they have learned how to drive, that it is important to take different types of hazards into account, and that EF performance is related to driving performance. This relation may be different for drivers with and without ASD. Moreover, the relation may depend on the specific EFs and driving parameters under investigation. Future research could focus on the very early phases of driving education, and include additional driving and EF measures.
Authors: Veerle Ross, Ellen M.M. Jongen, Kris Brijs, Giovanni Vanroelen, Caroline Beelen, Irene Maltagliati, Martijn van Beers, Robert A.C. Ruiter, Tom Brijs, Wael Alhajyaseen, Abdrabo Soliman, Geert Wets, Marleen Vanvuchelen