Psychologist Simon Baron-Cohen and his colleagues at Cambridge's Autism Research Centre have created the Autism-Spectrum Quotient, or AQ, as a measure of the extent of autistic traits in adults. In the first major trial using the test, the average score in the control group was 16.4. Eighty percent of those diagnosed with autism or a related disorder scored 32 or higher. The test is not a means for making a diagnosis, however, and many who score above 32 and even meet the diagnostic criteria for mild autism or Asperger's report no difficulty functioning in their everyday lives.
Definitely agree Slightly agree Slightly disagree Definitely disagree 1 I prefer to do things with others rather than on my own. 2 I prefer to do things the same way over and over again. 3 If I try to imagine something, I find it very easy to create a picture in my mind. 4 I frequently get so strongly absorbed in one thing that I lose sight of other things. 5 I often notice small sounds when others do not. 6 I usually notice car number plates or similar strings of information. 7 Other people frequently tell me that what I've said is impolite, even though I think it is polite. 8 When I'm reading a story, I can easily imagine what the characters might look like. 9 I am fascinated by dates. 10 In a social group, I can easily keep track of several different people's conversations. 11 I find social situations easy. 12 I tend to notice details that others do not. 13 I would rather go to a library than to a party. 14 I find making up stories easy. 15 I find myself drawn more strongly to people than to things. 16 I tend to have very strong interests, which I get upset about if I can't pursue. 17 I enjoy social chitchat. 18 When I talk, it isn't always easy for others to get a word in edgewise. 19 I am fascinated by numbers. 20 When I'm reading a story, I find it difficult to work out the characters' intentions. 21 I don't particularly enjoy reading fiction. 22 I find it hard to make new friends. 23 I notice patterns in things all the time. 24 I would rather go to the theater than to a museum. 25 It does not upset me if my daily routine is disturbed. 26 I frequently find that I don't know how to keep a conversation going. 27 I find it easy to 'read between the lines' when someone is talking to me. 28 I usually concentrate more on the whole picture, rather than on the small details. 29 I am not very good at remembering phone numbers. 30 I don't usually notice small changes in a situation or a person's appearance. 31 I know how to tell if someone listening to me is getting bored. 32 I find it easy to do more than one thing at once. 33 When I talk on the phone, I'm not sure when it's my turn to speak. 34 I enjoy doing things spontaneously. 35 I am often the last to understand the point of a joke. 36 I find it easy to work out what someone is thinking or feeling just by looking at their face. 37 If there is an interruption, I can switch back to what I was doing very quickly. 38 I am good at social chitchat. 39 People often tell me that I keep going on and on about the same thing. 40 When I was young, I used to enjoy playing games involving pretending with other children. 41 I like to collect information about categories of things (e.g., types of cars, birds, trains, plants). 42 I find it difficult to imagine what it would be like to be someone else. 43 I like to carefully plan any activities I participate in. 44 I enjoy social occasions. 45 I find it difficult to work out people's intentions. 46 New situations make me anxious. 47 I enjoy meeting new people. 48 I am a good diplomat. 49 I am not very good at remembering people's date of birth. 50 I find it very easy to play games with children that involve pretending.