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When 2 become 1: Autistic simultaneity judgements about asynchronous audiovisual speech

Poole, D., Gowen, E., Poliakoff, E. , Lambrechts, A. ORCID: 0000-0002-0497-1475 & Jones, L. A. (2023). When 2 become 1: Autistic simultaneity judgements about asynchronous audiovisual speech. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, doi: 10.1177/17470218231197518


It has been proposed that autistic people experience a temporal distortion whereby the temporal binding window of multisensory integration is extended. Research to date has focused on autistic children so whether these differences persist into adulthood remains unknown. In addition, the possibility that the previous observations have arisen from between-group differences in response bias, rather than perceptual differences, has not been addressed. Participants completed simultaneity judgements of audiovisual speech stimuli across a range of stimulus-onset asynchronies. Response times and accuracy data were fitted to a drift-diffusion model so that the drift rate (a measure of processing efficiency) and starting point (response bias) could be estimated. In Experiment 1, we tested a sample of non-autistic adults who completed the Autism Quotient questionnaire. Autism Quotient score was not correlated with either drift rate or response bias, nor were there between-group differences when splitting based on the first and third quantiles of scores. In Experiment 2, we compared the performance of autistic with a group of non-autistic adults. There were no between-group differences in either drift rate or starting point. The results of this study do not support the previous suggestion that autistic people have an extended temporal binding window for audiovisual speech. In addition, exploratory analysis revealed that operationalising the temporal binding window in different ways influenced whether a group difference was observed, which is an important consideration for future work.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © Experimental Psychology Society 2023. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (
Publisher Keywords: Autism, timing, simultaneity judgement, audiovisual, drift-diffusion model, temporal binding window
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Psychology
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