Autistic Children Learn Social Skills With the Help of Humanoid Robot

by Raja Nandhini on March 22, 2013 at 2:30 AM
 Autistic Children Learn Social Skills With the Help of Humanoid Robot

A new humanoid robotic system named NAO has been designed to help autistic children learn their social skills efficiently.

Nilanjan Sarkar from Vanderbilt University, who was involved in researches to improve man-machine interface, along with other engineers and autism experts initiated this project.


Many studies have found that children including those with autism were attracted by robots. This motivated the scientists to integrate robots with an adaptive intelligence system and use the set up to train autistic children in gaining joint attention, which is coordinating attention with other people or objects.

Researchers designed the system ARIA (Adaptive Robot-Mediated Intervention Architecture), which adapted itself to meet the child's training requirement. Scientists set up a room with flat panel displays attached to sidewalls. In the front, a robot was made to stand on a table facing the child who was seated in a chair. The head movements of the child were tracked by cameras attached to the walls and from LEDs attached to a cap worn by the child.

NAO was programmed with a training protocol involving a series of gestures and verbal instructions similar to that given by human therapists. The training begins by asking the child to look an image or video on the display panel. Verbal prompts were combined with gestures if the child did not respond.

A study involving 12 children was conducted to test the set up. Six of them were autistic and the others were in the control group. Both the groups attended training session given by both the robot and human therapist.

It was noted that both the groups were attentive for a longer time to training sessions given by robots. The attention span was low among autistic children when compared to control group while the training was given by therapist.

Researchers suggest that these systems could supplement current training practices and help autistic children learn their cognitive skills at a much faster pace.

The study and its findings are reported in IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering.

Source: Medindia
Font : A-A+



Latest Child Health News

Vitamin D Supplements Fail to Prevent Child Bone Fractures
In individuals with vitamin D deficiency, vitamin D supplements raised their levels to the normal range. Despite this, they did not influence fracture risk.
Innate Harmonies: Newborns Sense Musical Beats
Gaining deeper understanding of early perception is crucial for unraveling infant cognition and understanding how musical abilities impact early development.
Vitamin B-12 in Breast Milk Promotes Baby's Brain Health
Prenatal and postnatal B-12 vitamins increase the micro-nutrients in breast milk to support the development of the baby's brain.
Group B Streptococcus Threat to Newborns
The presence of Streptococcus in the placenta was associated with a two- to three-fold increase in the probability of neonatal unit admission.
Can Maternal Discrimination Influence Baby's Brain Development?
Facing discrimination and acculturating during pregnancy could not only affect the mother but also potentially harm the baby's brain health.
View All
This site uses cookies to deliver our services.By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use  Ok, Got it. Close

Autistic Children Learn Social Skills With the Help of Humanoid Robot Personalised Printable Document (PDF)

Please complete this form and we'll send you a personalised information that is requested

You may use this for your own reference or forward it to your friends.

Please use the information prudently. If you are not a medical doctor please remember to consult your healthcare provider as this information is not a substitute for professional advice.

Name *

Email Address *

Country *

Areas of Interests