Impaired motor cognition may underpin empathy problems in autism. The actions and feelings questionnaire (AFQ), designed to examine individual differences in motor cognition, was completed fully by 1391 adults, of whom 326 reported a diagnosis of an autism spectrum condition (ASC). A confirmatory factor analysis supported a 3 factor model. The AFQ total and ‘feelings’ subscale scores correlated highly with the EQ and ROC curves were similar. Our findings suggest that individual differences in empathic traits are heavily accounted for by variance in mechanisms that serve sensorimotor learning (motor cognition) in relation to emotional states. The AFQ is a self-report tool that provides a valid indicator of autism status in adult populations.
- motor cognition
- confirmatory factor analysis