Bogus Study: Suspected Feigning of Autism in Adults: A clinician Survey, Indications and Proposed Guidelines

A study was published in the journal Advances in Autism on January 21, 2022. It was an online survey that was targeting a range of autism professionals with varying levels of experience, working in clinical settings.

Half of these professionals that completed the survey reported experiencing situations of suspected feigning of “adult autism” across a range of clinical contexts and with different motivations. They saw textbook self descriptions and inconsistent problems.

This can happen but as inaccessible as a diagnosis as an adult is, it is very unlikely.

By the study’s admission, the survey is limited by a potential sample bias and no information regarding the clinical characteristic of those suspected to have faked. This was an internet survey. Because of this, there was no way to verify the identify the respondents to see if they actually are professionals or not.

This study was not found on science hub. This is because surveys are not scientific.

Take my diagnosis for example:

I had an in depth diagnosis of ADHD when I was 6. Little girls in the 80’s just were not diagnosed with any neurodivergency. This report is 28 pages long and lists all the developmental milestones that my mother answered at the time. The doctor looked at this and had all the information he needed. My autism diagnosis is very unusual because most people do not have a report like this. Thank goodness my mother saved this. If she did not I would not have a diagnosis.

An example of a survey about autism does that is effective and not biased was done by Autistic Not Weird.

Survey as Data Collection

They used a survey for data collection. They had 1183 respondents. The respondents were 16-90 so not all of the respondents were adults. This is a small sample size to represent autistic adults everywhere. Not only that, the demographic was only white, AFAB and have a high school education or higher. This sample size was in no way diverse!

Why aren’t surveys reliable?

A survey is not a scientific method. There is no way that the responses of an anonymous survey can be verified. There is not guarantee that people would only answer honestly. It is far too easy for people to misrepresent themselves behind a computer screen. There is often a reason to misrepresent. Because of this fact, a question is raised of whether or not surveys can provide accurate data.

There is solid evidence that surveys are unreliable and gives skewed results. This is a systematic problem that there are a plethora of studies focused on a phenomena called hypothetical bias.

This study has so many holes, I could drive an 18 wheeler through it. This is just a tactic to delegitimize last discovered autistic people.

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