Presentation on theme: "The Controversy of Using Virtual Environments to Teach Social Skills to Individuals with Autistic Spectrum Disorders By Sarah Baudains, Sara Andargachew,"— Presentation transcript:
The Controversy of Using Virtual Environments to Teach Social Skills to Individuals with Autistic Spectrum Disorders By Sarah Baudains, Sara Andargachew, Clara Bentall and Lucy Aston
Introduction Autism – Impairment in social interactions – Impairment in communication – Repetitive and stereotyped behaviour Previous methods of social skills training Virtual Reality Virtual Environments
Virtual Environments for Social Skills Training:Comments from two adolescents with ASD – Parsons et al 2003 Aims – To investigate whether participants relate their use of the VE to experiences in the real world and whether they enjoy using the VE to learn – To provide examples of the exchanges taking place between the participant and the facilitator during the use of the VE, therefore showing the importance of the facilitator
Screen shot of café VE illustrating the key functions of the program.
Style of Technology How can social skills be taught in the absence of real social interaction? Need to avoid the children simply learning which buttons to press. The importance of a facilitator, to avoid the VEs becoming meaningless stand-alone activities (Parsons et al., 2004). Autistic individuals may find the non-social nature of computer-based tasks so appealing that they become overly reliant on the technology (Howlin, 1998).
How realistic should VEs be? Does the VE have to be experienced in the most immersive way possible to be effective? Head-mounted displays could cause cybersickness: nausea, headaches and dizziness (Cobb et al, 1999). Unpopular with children who have autism.
Improving the Technology The desktop VEs used in Parsons study most appropriate style of technology. Could improve gaze direction and facial expressions and building in more spontaneity. Too much detail may be counter-productive (Cromby, 1996). The development of collaborative VEs may be beneficial (Parsons et al, 2004).
Methodology Qualitative approach – Generalisation restrictions – The voice of the individual Participants learn at different rates and in contrasting ways (Parsons et. al. 2004, p.13) – Exploratory research Picking up on spontaneously volunteered information (Parsons et al., 2004, p.10)
Combining findings – Value of combining approaches – Case study as part of wider AS Interactive Project Use of an iterative process Methodology continued
User-centred development – Involvement of representative users – Technology vs. research led design – Multi-disciplinary collaboration (involvement of autism professionals, teachers and people with ASDs) Self-report – Accessing the views of people with ASDs – Limitations communication is a key deficit in autism (Moore et al., 2000, p.220) – Possibilities
Autism and VE: the controversies Repetition of responses Physical and literal responses Treating the VE like a game Testing out the responses Enjoyment of the VE
Conclusions Benefits Limitations Success dependent on aims of VE
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