Attention-based autism spectrum disorder screening with privileged modality

Shi Chen, Qi Zhao

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

11 Scopus citations


This paper presents a novel framework for automatic and quantitative screening of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). It is motivated to address two issues in the current clinical settings: 1) short of clinical resources with the prevalence of ASD (1.7% in the United States), and 2) subjectivity of ASD screening. This work differentiates itself with three unique features: First, it proposes an ASD screening with privileged modality framework that integrates information from two behavioral modalities during training and improves the performance on each single modality at testing. The proposed framework does not require overlap in subjects between the modalities. Second, it develops the first computational model to classify people with ASD using a photo-taking task where subjects freely explore their environment in a more ecological setting. Photo-taking reveals attentional preference of subjects, differentiating people with ASD from healthy people, and is also easy to implement in real-world clinical settings without requiring advanced diagnostic instruments. Third, this study for the first time takes advantage of the temporal information in eye movements while viewing images, encoding more detailed behavioral differences between ASD people and healthy controls. Experiments show that our ASD screening models can achieve superior performance, outperforming the previous state-of-the-art methods by a considerable margin. Moreover, our framework using diverse modalities demonstrates performance improvement on both the photo-taking and image-viewing tasks, providing a general paradigm that takes in multiple sources of behavioral data for a more accurate ASD screening. The framework is also applicable to various scenarios where one-to-one pairwise relationship is difficult to obtain across different modalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - 2019 International Conference on Computer Vision, ICCV 2019
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781728148038
StatePublished - Oct 2019
Event17th IEEE/CVF International Conference on Computer Vision, ICCV 2019 - Seoul, Korea, Republic of
Duration: Oct 27 2019Nov 2 2019

Publication series

NameProceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Computer Vision
ISSN (Print)1550-5499


Conference17th IEEE/CVF International Conference on Computer Vision, ICCV 2019
Country/TerritoryKorea, Republic of

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work is supported by NSF Grants 1908711 and 1849107.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 IEEE.


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