Single words or short phrases were both counted as one item for scoring

Single words or short phrases were both counted as

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Single words or short phrases were both counted as one item for scoring. Statistical analysis There is a substantial amount of heterogeneity in the ASD population (Jeste and Geschwind 2014 ), often making it difficult to find suitably matched controls to complete stud- ies. We addressed this difficulty using a within-subjects, repeated-measures design, which allowed participants to act as their own controls over the two randomly assigned (verum or sham), double-blinded sessions. Because of our small sample size, a Wilcoxon signed-rank test model was utilized to examine if group differences existed (sham tDCS, verum tDCS). The Wilcoxon signed-rank test is used with a
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J. Esse Wilson et al. 1 3 repeated-measures design where the data is paired, and the test is considered nonparametric, so minimal assumptions need to be made about the data, such as it being normally distributed (Whitley and Ball 2002 ). All procedures were two-tailed with an alpha level set at 0.05. Primary outcome measures considered were (1) scores from the TASSK-M with a total of 26 points possible and (2) VF test score where each item that was accurately provided was scored as one point for the designated semantic or emotion category, as well as for each accurate switch between emotion catego- ries on the switching task. We then conducted a post-hoc analysis again using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test on five other comparisons, verum vs. sham tDCS on each of the three portions of the VF test (emotion word, semantic, and emotion-word switching), and the TASSK-M baseline vs. verum tDCS and baseline vs. sham tDCS. Each of these five comparisons was then analyzed with a Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons with the statistical significance tested at an alpha level of 0.007 (0.05/7). Results Of the six participants who sought to participate in the study, all met screening criteria and completed both visits for the study. No significant changes in mood or pain were reported from either the verum or sham tDCS sessions, with none of the participants reporting more than 25% of their responses on the MQ with negative changes in mood (e.g., moving from “moderately” to “extremely” in response to a question such as “indicate the extent to which you feel irritable”), or reporting a 7 or higher (on a 10-point Likert scale) on any item of the PS questionnaire (assessing sensations of itch- ing, tingling, and heat). Additionally, examination of mean participant rating scores from the PS questionnaire (assess- ing tingling, burning, and itching sensations) showed no significant differences when comparing verum to sham ses- sions ( p = 0.38). Information collected from the self-report screening questionnaire for participant demographics (e.g. age, gender), history (e.g., depression, anxiety, attention deficit), and characteristics (AQ, Shipley-2 scores) is sum- marized in Table  1 .
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