The current study presents the use of a humanoid robot to facilitate compliant behaviors to two types of directives in four children with autism. The children participated in a three-month intervention program that incorporated core components of the SCERTS model in order to facilitate social communication (Prizant, Wetherby, Rubin, & Laurent, 2003). Treatment sessions were comprised of 40 minutes of traditional treatment and 10 minutes of interaction with a humanoid robot. Pre- and post-intervention assessment were conducted, each involving a 5 minute interaction with the child's mother, in which they were presented with directives in the form of physical manipulation and verbal requests accompanied by a gesture or model. These pre- and post-intervention sessions were recorded, analyzed, and coded for compliant and non-compliant behavior to the directives, as well as any eye contact, language, or reciprocal action that accompanied their behavior. The overall results were variable, revealing that two participants made notable gains, one child remained consistent, and another participant showed a decrease in compliant behavior in the post-intervention sessions. Further research should be conducted to include a longer period of baseline and intervention, more systematic identification of the most effective probes for the child, and documentation of the child's physical and emotional state.
College and Department
David O. McKay School of Education; Communication Disorders
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Nelson, Holly Jeanne, "The Effects of Intervention Involving a Robot on Compliance of Four Children with Autism to Requests Produced by their Mothers" (2013). All Theses and Dissertations. 3593.
Autism, Robots, Parent Interaction