Sometimes new drivers, including teens with high-functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder (HFASD), have a hard time visually detecting critical items and anticipating a needed response to objects and other traffic indicators of a potentially hazardous situation. These critical items include traffic signs such as speed limit, stop and yield signs, as well as crosswalk and pavement markings that alert drivers to possible pedestrian traffic. In addition, novice drivers may also be unaware of other drivers’ break lights and turn signals that would require a response. Research has shown that the detection of these items and other skills required for safe driving, can be improved through driving-related computerized training programs.
This research study is being done to test the benefits of a computerized training program for driver’s education students to see if it improves perception of these important traffic indicators for novice drivers, particularly those with high functioning autism spectrum disorder. Our goal is to help teenagers with HFASD learn to drive more safely.