Monday, February 18, 2008

Time to Rethink the Eye Contact Objectives

The British Journal of Developmental Psychology recently published a study which was written about in Seed Magazine about the role of eye contact aversion and cognitive load reduction.

It seems that when a person is challenged with a task that person naturally looks away in order to decrease cognitive load and increase problem solving ability. It would seem to me then that our students, who frequent have substantial issues with eye contact, look away for the same reasons, but more frequently because simpler tasks are more challenging to them.

In the long run the jury is still out on where people look when they look away and on exactly why, but I know that this study gave me pause when I think about my students who have or have had eye contact objectives in their IEPs.

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