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Sensory Processing in Autism and ADHD

Researcher adjusting EEG sensor net on smiling girl's head.

Our researcher Francesca with one of our little participants, wearing an EEG sensor net.

Sensory Processing in Children with Autism and ADHD

A pervasive aspect of developmental disorders is hypersensitivity to sensory stimuli.  These “sensory problems” cause significant disruption in the children's lives, but are nevertheless often considered secondary in importance to cognitive and social differences.

Based on our knowledge of sensory processing, we hypothesize that they are a manifestation of pervasive impairments in fundamental neural computations. We hypothesize that malfunction in these neural computations may be the “core deficit” in clinical populations, like children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), providing a foundation not only for sensory hypersensitivity but also for the cognitive and social differences. Understanding differences in sensory responsivity may therefore elucidate, more generally, the underlying  psychological and neural differences in these populations. We are recording EEG to characterize brain activity and correlate these measures with diagnostic criteria for ASD and ADHD.

You can help us in this mission by participating in our study!

We are currently looking for:      (9/22/16) Children with ASD. Children with ADHD. Age range 4 to 9 years.

If you are interested please call 650-725-2440 or send an e-mail to