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Autism

Autism, and its milder form, Asperger Syndrome, are often referred to together as Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD), Around half a million people have these in the UK. Psychologist Simon Baron-Cohen and his colleagues at Cambridge's Autism Research Centre (This link opens in a new window/tab) created the Autism-Spectrum Quotient, or AQ, as a measure of the extent of autistic traits in adults. This test asks you to say how much you agree with a series of statements.

Note: The test is not diagnostic, which means that even if you score over 32, it doesn't mean you've definitely got Autism or Asperger Syndrome. Many people who score highly and even meet the diagnostic criteria for mild autism or Asperger's report no difficulty functioning in their everyday lives.

Time required: 7 minutes

Autism

Before beginning the test, please answer the questions below. These will be used to calculate national totals – they will not be linked to you individually.

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Autism

Question 1 of 50
 

I prefer to do things with others rather than on my own.

Autism

Question 2 of 50
 

I prefer to do things the same way over and over again.

Autism

Question 3 of 50
 

If I try to imagine something, I find it very easy to create a picture in my mind.

Autism

Question 4 of 50
 

I frequently get so strongly absorbed in one thing that I lose sight of other things.

Autism

Question 5 of 50
 

I often notice small sounds when others do not.

Autism

Question 6 of 50
 

I usually notice car number plates or similar strings of information.

Autism

Question 7 of 50
 

Other people frequently tell me that what I've said is impolite, even though I think it is polite.

Autism

Question 8 of 50
 

When I'm reading a story, I can easily imagine what the characters might look like.

Autism

Question 9 of 50
 

I am fascinated by dates.

Autism

Question 10 of 50
 

In a social group, I can easily keep track of several different people's conversations.

Autism

Question 11 of 50
 

I find social situations easy.

Autism

Question 12 of 50
 

I tend to notice details that others do not.

Autism

Question 13 of 50
 

I would rather go to a library than to a party.

Autism

Question 14 of 50
 

I find making up stories easy.

Autism

Question 15 of 50
 

I find myself drawn more strongly to people than to things.

Autism

Question 16 of 50
 

I tend to have very strong interests, which I get upset about if I can't pursue.

Autism

Question 17 of 50
 

I enjoy social chitchat.

Autism

Question 18 of 50
 

When I talk, it isn't always easy for others to get a word in edgewise.

Autism

Question 19 of 50
 

I am fascinated by numbers.

Autism

Question 20 of 50
 

When I'm reading a story, I find it difficult to work out the characters' intentions.

Autism

Question 21 of 50
 

I don't particularly enjoy reading fiction.

Autism

Question 22 of 50
 

I find it hard to make new friends.

Autism

Question 23 of 50
 

I notice patterns in things all the time.

Autism

Question 24 of 50
 

I would rather go to the theater than to a museum.

Autism

Question 25 of 50
 

It does not upset me if my daily routine is disturbed.

Autism

Question 26 of 50
 

I frequently find that I don't know how to keep a conversation going.

Autism

Question 27 of 50
 

I find it easy to 'read between the lines' when someone is talking to me

Autism

Question 28 of 50
 

I usually concentrate more on the whole picture, rather than on the small details.

Autism

Question 29 of 50
 

I am not very good at remembering phone numbers.

Autism

Question 30 of 50
 

I don't usually notice small changes in a situation or a person's appearance.

Autism

Question 31 of 50
 

I know how to tell if someone listening to me is getting bored.

Autism

Question 32 of 50
 

I find it easy to do more than one thing at once.

Autism

Question 33 of 50
 

When I talk on the phone, I'm not sure when it's my turn to speak.

Autism

Question 34 of 50
 

I enjoy doing things spontaneously.

Autism

Question 35 of 50
 

I am often the last to understand the point of a joke.

Autism

Question 36 of 50
 

I find it easy to work out what someone is thinking or feeling just by looking at their face.

Autism

Question 37 of 50
 

If there is an interruption, I can switch back to what I was doing very quickly.

Autism

Question 38 of 50
 

I am good at social chitchat.

Autism

Question 39 of 50
 

People often tell me that I keep going on and on about the same thing

Autism

Question 40 of 50
 

When I was young, I used to enjoy playing games involving pretending with other children.

Autism

Question 41 of 50
 

I like to collect information about categories of things (e.g., types of cars, birds, trains, plants).

Autism

Question 42 of 50
 

I find it difficult to imagine what it would be like to be someone else.

Autism

Question 43 of 50
 

I like to carefully plan any activities I participate in.

Autism

Question 44 of 50
 

I enjoy social occasions.

Autism

Question 45 of 50
 

I find it difficult to work out people's intentions.

Autism

Question 46 of 50
 

New situations make me anxious.

Autism

Question 47 of 50
 

I enjoy meeting new people.

Autism

Question 48 of 50
 

I am a good diplomat.

Autism

Question 49 of 50
 

I am not very good at remembering people's date of birth.

Autism

Question 50 of 50
 

I find it very easy to play games with children that involve pretending.

Autism: Your results

Low
High
You scored %
  • Below average score

    The average score for the original control group of this test was 16.4 and your score is below that. Your results suggest that you show few autistic traits and it is highly unlikely that you are suffering from Autism or Asperger's Syndrome. If you feel, however, that you are not able to function normally in day-to-day life, it may be that you are suffering from a different or related condition. In these circumstances, go and see your GP to discuss these issues further.

    Autism can be mild, in which case the impact on daily life is minimal - or it can be so severe that sufferers struggle to function in their day-to-day lives, where the world seems a strange and scary place. There is currently no cure for ASD, but there are a range of treatments that can improve/manage the symptoms.

    Autistic Spectrum Disorders have a wide range of symptoms, grouped into three broad categories:

    • Problems and difficulties with social interaction, such as a lack of understanding and awareness of other people's emotions/feelings.
    • Difficulty with language and communication skills, such an inability to start conversations or take part in them properly (often resulting in interrupting others inappropriately).
    • Unusual patterns of thought and physical behaviour – such as making repetitive physical movements (e.g. hand tapping or twisting).
  • Average score

    The average score for the original control group of this test was 16.4 and your score is roughly in line with this, making it highly unlikely that you are suffering from an autistic spectrum disorder. Follow-up research to the original test indicated that a score like yours of 26 or below effectively discounts the possibility of a diagnosis of autism, but as this test is not diagnostic, only a health professional can draw that conclusion for certain. If you feel that you are not able to function normally in day-to-day life, it may be that you are suffering from a different or related condition. In these circumstances, go and see your GP to discuss these issues further.

    Autism can be mild, in which case the impact on daily life is minimal - or it can be so severe that sufferers struggle to function in their day-to-day lives, where the world seems a strange and scary place. There is currently no cure for ASD, but there are a range of treatments that can improve/manage the symptoms.

    Autistic Spectrum Disorders have a wide range of symptoms, grouped into three broad categories:

    • Problems and difficulties with social interaction, such as a lack of understanding and awareness of other people's emotions/feelings.
    • Difficulty with language and communication skills, such an inability to start conversations or take part in them properly (often resulting in interrupting others inappropriately).
    • Unusual patterns of thought and physical behaviour – such as making repetitive physical movements (e.g. hand tapping or twisting).
  • Above average score, but below the threshold

    You scored slightly higher than average on this test, but are still below the threshold of 32 points that would likely indicate an autistic spectrum disorder. Just because you have scored higher than average, it does not mean that you are likely to be autistic - many people who score highly have no problems functioning in their day-to-day lives. This can be because of a good match with their chosen career (anecdotally, mathematicians and computer scientists score higher in this AQ test) or because they have a supportive family/social network that prevents any secondary problems occurring. If you feel that you are not able to function normally in day-to-day life, it may be worth talking to your GP about these test results.

    Autism can be mild, in which case the impact on daily life is minimal - or it can be so severe that sufferers struggle to function in their day-to-day lives, where the world seems a strange and scary place. There is currently no cure for ASD, but there are a range of treatments that can improve/manage the symptoms.

    Autistic Spectrum Disorders have a wide range of symptoms, grouped into three broad categories:

    • Problems and difficulties with social interaction, such as a lack of understanding and awareness of other people's emotions/feelings.
    • Difficulty with language and communication skills, such an inability to start conversations or take part in them properly (often resulting in interrupting others inappropriately).
    • Unusual patterns of thought and physical behaviour – such as making repetitive physical movements (e.g. hand tapping or twisting).
  • A higher than average score that is above the clinical threshold

    80% of those diagnosed with autism or a related disorder scored 32 or above in this test like you, but that score doesn't mean you definitely have autism. Many people who score highly have no problems functioning in their day-to-day lives. This can be because of a good match with their chosen career (anecdotally, mathematicians and computer scientists score higher in this AQ test) or because they have a supportive family /social network that prevents any secondary problems occurring. If you feel that you are not able to function normally in day-to-day life, it is probably worth talking to your GP about these test results.

    Autism can be mild, in which case the impact on daily life is minimal - or it can be so severe that sufferers struggle to function in their day-to-day lives, where the world seems a strange and scary place. There is currently no cure for ASD, but there are a range of treatments that can improve/manage the symptoms.

    Autistic Spectrum Disorders have a wide range of symptoms, grouped into three broad categories:

    • Problems and difficulties with social interaction, such as a lack of understanding and awareness of other people's emotions/feelings.
    • Difficulty with language and communication skills, such an inability to start conversations or take part in them properly (often resulting in interrupting others inappropriately).
    • Unusual patterns of thought and physical behaviour – such as making repetitive physical movements (e.g. hand tapping or twisting).

Autism

71,072 people have taken the test, and so far...

49% Scored “high”
49% Scored “high”

Highest scoring occupation engineer

Lowest scoring occupation musician

Average regional scores

Light green = low score -> Darkest green = high score
This is a visual representation of scores for this test for several regions of the United Kingdom.

How many of each age group scored “high”?

Age ranges: 18-30, 31-35, 36-40, 41-45, 46-50, 56-60, 61+ 18 to 30 year olds on average scored 40% 31 to 35 year olds on average scored 35% 36 to 40 year olds on average scored 70% 41 to 45 year olds on average scored 30% 46 to 50 year olds on average scored 5% 51 to 55 year olds on average scored 10% 56 to 60 year olds on average scored 20% 61 years and over on average scored 80%
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