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Psychology Lecture 28.docx

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Western University
Psychology 1000

Psychology Lecture 28, read Chapter 9 and 424-428 Savant Syndrome, Autism and Theories  What causes savant syndrome?  What are the symptoms of Autism?  What is intelligence?  Bias o Is the test ‘culture-fair’ or do the answers require specific knowledge available only to certain (sub) cultures? o More than ‘academic’ question  Streaming  Who goes to uni and who doesn’t  Separating people, and can change their lives o So test has to be unbiased, otherwise you’re ruining people’s lives for no reason o Dove (1968)  Culture fair tests  What is intelligence? o Savant Syndrome  Dr. J.L Down (1887) o Idiot Savant  Idiot was accepted category of mental retardation at the time  IQ < 25  Unused term now  Excel in narrow range of abilities  Lightening fast math  Music  Calendar calculations  Art  Mechanical or special abilities  Other reports of ability in:  Time estimation  Sensory discrimination  ESP  Comon: Music + blind + autistic  Can have multiple skills  All seem to be right hemispheric brain people  All linked with phenomenal but narrow memory  Very rare –less than 100 reports of prodigious activity  Only 25 living savants  6 times more likely in males than females o Causes  Eidetic Imaging  Perhaps savants have more photographic memory o Unlikely  Calculations beyond published data  High % are blind  Hereditary  Early studies suggest family relationship  But recent data suggest no  1 in 23 relatives of 5 savants  Sensory Deprivation 
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