Simulated interactions benefit autistic people, or at least the following piece of information suggests so. A groundbreaking study claims that simulated interactions in which autistic people converse with a virtual partner aid in developing better social interaction skills. The newly introduced application can supposedly benefit autistic spectrum disorder patients to function more effectively in the larger world.
Majority of individuals diagnosed with autism apparently have normal intellectual capabilities. Yet these patients may continue facing difficulties in social and work environments because of their severely impaired abilities to interact and converse with others. In order to provide benefit to such people, scientists conducted a study in which adults with autism had to participate in a prototype conversation simulation program.
“Over the past two decades, simulations have proven effective at helping people with a variety of physical and mental disorders. This new application could make it so many with Autism Spectrum Disorder could function more effectively in the larger world,” quoted Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCIA, Editor-in-Chief of Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, from the Interactive Media Institute, San Diego, CA.
In a simulated environment autistic people who are not otherwise intellectually disabled interact with virtual partners. They are given onscreen dialog options and scored on the ability to initiate, maintain and conclude a pleasant conversation on a variety of topics. Positive results were reported by all the study patients. Hence, it was concluded that virtual conversation simulator can seemingly enhance the quality of life among adults suffering from autism.
The study is published in the journal Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking.