PREDICTIVE ANALYSIS OF ANXIETY INDICES IN PEOPLE WITH ASD



Manuel Ojea Rúa
Adrián Tizón Ramírez




Abstract
Individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) have high anxiety indices due to complexity to understand the social interactions in which they participate, which may be due to the intrinsic characteristics that form diagnosis, investigated by the perceptual-cognitive hypotheses of the cognitive central theory (Happe, 1997; Happe and Frith, 2006). Likewise, it's particular form of processing involves deficits in the development at neural interrelation of the cognitive system throughout the information processing operation during the interactions carried out –both lived and perceived– leads to immediate consequences in perceptual- cognitive process (Simmons and Barsalou, 2003). Then, according to these hypotheses, both clinical characteristics of personality and the confrontation of unforeseen contexts may involve significant predictive factors that high increase of anxiety levels in people with ASD. This research therefore aims to describe the possible explanatory predictive models for highlighted anxiety in students with ASD. A total of 111 students with ASD were involved in this study through the answers given by professionals directly related in their specific educational process to an ad hoc questionnaire, which is composed of 23 items relate to different possible explanatory variables of anxiety processes in students with ASD (see Appendix 1). Results found through statistical analysis of regression equation conclude that anxiety indices are related with following predictor variables: 1) “inattention" variable (attention deficit and hyperactivity), 2) "unpredictable" variable (context not foreseen), 3) “diagnosis” variable (disorder diagnosis), and 4) “internal” variable (personality characteristics, internal conflicts lived or perceived), which are included in predictive models to explain possible causes of increased anxiety in people with ASD. Furthermore, comparative analysis carried out through Tukey HSD test for the "diagnosis" and "age" variables, and the t independent samples test for the variable "sex", didn´t show any differences in the anxiety levels with regard to the variables, so anxiety isn´t influenced for these static variables in people with ASD. 


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