: Building 4S
MA Queens College CUNY
BA Indiana University Bloomington
Biography / Academic Interests
Using a combination of behavioral observations, eye-tracking, surveys and standardized measures, I study strengths and weaknesses associated with autism spectrum disorders across the lifespan. I have examined concurrent and longitudinal relations between early social and non-social attention and subsequent autistic symptomatology and linguistic and adaptive skills. Through an online survey, my collaborators and I discovered that individuals on the autism spectrum and people aware of the neurodiversity movement (an autism rights movement) are less interested in finding a cure for autism than people without autism and people who are not aware of the neurodiversity movement. Thus, the majority of autism research currently conducted in the United States may not reflect the research interests of many people on the autism spectrum. However, individuals on and off the spectrum who participated in our study shared an interest in helping people on the spectrum gain adaptive skills and independence. Thus, my current research focuses on using technology to help individuals on the spectrum communicate and plan for the future. Drawing from my experiences working directly with children on the spectrum, my collaborators and I are developing an iPad app to help children with autism communicate about and predict their emotions. We are also developing an online planning and social networking tool to help students with autism connect to one another and plan for the future.
Scholarship / Publications
Gillespie-Lynch, K., Greenfield, P.M., Lyn, H., & Savage-Rumbaugh, S. (2011). The role of dialogue in the ontogeny and phylogeny of early symbol combinations: A cross-species comparison of bonobo, chimpanzee, and human learners. First Language, 31, 442-460.
Gillespie-Lynch, K., Sepeta, L., Wang, Y., Marshall, S., Gomez, L., Sigman, M. & Hutman, T. (2011). Early childhood predictors of the social competence of adults with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.
Greenfield, P.M & Gillespie-Lynch, K. (2008) Intersubjectivity evolved to fit the brain, but grammar co-evolved with the brain. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 31(5), 523-524.
Kapp, S.S. *, Gillespie-Lynch, K. *, Sherman, L. & Hutman, T. (In press). Deficit, difference or both? Autism and neurodiversity. Developmental Psychology.*shared first authorship
Hutman, T., Chela, M.K., Gillespie-Lynch, K. & Sigman, M. (2011) Selective visual attention at twelve months: Signs of autism in early social interactions. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 41, 1429-1435.
Lyn, H., Greenfield, P.M., Savage-Rumbaugh, S., Gillespie-Lynch, K., & Hopkins, W. D. (2010). Nonhuman primates do declare! A comparison of declarative symbol and gesture use in two children, two bonobos, and a chimpanzee. Language and Communication, 31(1), 63-74.
Navab, A. *, Gillespie-Lynch, K.*, Sigman, M., Johnson, S.P. & Hutman, T. (2011). Eye-tracking as a measure of responsiveness to joint attention in infants at risk for autism. Infancy, 1-16. *shared first authorship