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LOVE the positive spin.

Discovery Criteria for Aspie…

A. A qualitative advantage in social interaction, as manifested by a majority of the following:

1. peer relationships characterized by absolute loyalty and impeccable dependability
2. free of sexist, “age-ist”, or culturalist biases; ability to regard others at “face value”
3. speaking one’s mind irrespective of social context or adherence to personal beliefs
4. ability to pursue personal theory or perspective despite conflicting evidence
5. seeking an audience or friends capable of: enthusiasm for unique interests and topics;
6. consideration of details; spending time discussing a topic that may not be of primary interest
7. listening without continual judgement or assumption
8. interested primarily in significant contributions to conversation; preferring to avoid ‘ritualistic small talk’ or socially trivial statements and superficial conversation.
9. seeking sincere, positive, genuine friends with an unassuming sense of humour

B. Fluent in “Aspergerese”, a social language characterized by at least three of the following:

1. a determination to seek the truth
2. conversation free of hidden meaning or agenda
3. advanced vocabulary and interest in words
4. fascination with word-based humour, such as puns
5. advanced use of pictorial metaphor

C. Cognitive skills characterized by at least four of the following:

1. strong preference for detail over gestalt
2. original, often unique perspective in problem solving
3. exceptional memory and/or recall of details often forgotten or disregarded by others, for example: names, dates, schedules, routines
4. avid perseverance in gathering and cataloguing information on a topic of interest
5. persistence of thought
6. encyclopaedic or ‘CD ROM’ knowledge of one or more topics
7. knowledge of routines and a focused desire to maintain order and accuracy
8. clarity of values/decision making unaltered by political or financial factors

D. Additional possible features:

1. acute sensitivity to specific sensory experiences and stimuli, for example: hearing, touch, vision, and/or smell
2. strength in individual sports and games, particularly those involving endurance or visual accuracy, including rowing, swimming, bowling, chess
3. “social unsung hero” with trusting optimism: frequent victim of social weaknesses of others, while steadfast in the belief of the possibility of genuine friendship
4. increased probability over general population of attending university after high school
5. often take care of others outside the range of typical development