Tablet-based activity schedule for children with autism in mainstream environment

Author(s):
Charles Fage, Léonard Pommereau, Charles Consel, Émilie Balland, Hélène Sauzéon

Institution:

Inria Bordeaux Sud-Ouest

Abstract:

Including children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in mainstreamed environments creates a need for new interventions whose efficacy must be assessed in situ.
This paper presents a tablet-based application for activity schedules that has been designed following a participatory design approach involving mainstream teachers, special-education teachers and school aides. This applications addresses two domains of activities: classroom routines and verbal communications.
We assessed the efficiency of our application with a study involving 10 children with ASD in mainstream inclusion (5 children are equipped and 5 are not equipped). We show that (1) the use of the application is rapidly self-initiated (after two months for almost all the participants) and that (2) the tablet-supported routines are differently executed over time according to the activity domain conditions. Importantly, compared to the control children, the equipped children exhibited more classroom and communication routines correctly performed after three month of intervention.

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