Autism limits strategic thinking after all: A process tracing study of the beauty contest game

Michał Król , Magdalena Król


The beauty contest game is widely used to study the determinants of strategic thinking. Here, we examine the role of theory of mind in strategic reasoning by comparing both performance and the reasoning process in participants with autism vs. typically developing controls. Pantelis and Kennedy (2017) reported a surprising lack of difference between answers of participant with autism vs. controls in the game. Here, we study the process rather than just the outcome of reasoning by using a ‘payoff calculator’ with which one can simulate the game’s outcome before answering. We find that control participants play best response to others’ hypothetical choices entered into the calculator, while participants with autism are less strategic, choosing larger answers relative to those attributed to others. However, this difference could not be explained by the differences in the theory of mind between the groups with and without autism.
Author Michał Król
Michał Król,,
, Magdalena Król (Filia we Wrocławiu / Wydział Psychologii we Wrocławiu)
Magdalena Król,,
- Wydział Psychologii we Wrocławiu
Journal seriesThinking & Reasoning, [Thinking and Reasoning], ISSN 1354-6783, e-ISSN 1464-0708, (N/A 140 pkt)
Issue year2020
Publication size in sheets0.55
Keywords in Englishbeauty contest game; theory of mind; process tracing; autism; strategic reasoning
ASJC Classification1211 Philosophy; 3201 Psychology (miscellaneous); 3205 Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
Languageen angielski
Autism-tekst.pdf 1.47 MB
Additional file
Autism-Oswiadczenie naukowe_Krol.pdf 674.61 KB
Score (nominal)140
Score sourcejournalList
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2018 = 1.2; WoS Impact Factor: 2017 = 2.372 (2) - 2017=2.441 (5)
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