Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 12

ASD Related Abstracts

12 Aquatic Intervention Research for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Authors: Mehmet Yanardag, Ilker Yilmaz

Abstract:

Children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) enjoy and success the aquatic-based exercise and play skills in a pool instead of land-based exercise in a gym. Some authors also observed that many children with ASD experience more success in attaining movement skills in aquatic environment. Properties of the water and hydrodynamic principles cause buoyancy of the water and decrease effects of gravity and it leads to allow a child to practice important aquatic skills with limited motor skills. Also, some authors experience that parents liked the effects of the aquatic intervention program on children with ASD such as improving motor performance, movement capacity and learning basic swimming skills. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of aquatic exercise training on water orientation and underwater working capacity were measured in the pool. This study included in four male children between 5 and 7 years old with ASD and 6.25±0.5 years old. Aquatic exercise skills were applied by using one of the error less teaching which is called the 'most to least prompt' procedure during 12-week, three times a week and 60 minutes a day. The findings of this study indicated that there were improvements test results both water orientation skill and underwater working capacity of children with ASD after 12-weeks exercise training. It was seen that the aquatic exercise intervention would be affected to improve working capacity and orientation skills with the special education approaches applying children with ASD in multidisciplinary team-works.

Keywords: Aquatic, Children, autism, ASD, Orientation

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11 Robot-Assisted Learning for Communication-Care in Autism Intervention

Authors: Fazah Akhtar Hanapiah, Syamimi Shamsuddin, Hanafiah Yussof, Salina Mohamed, Nur Farah Farhan Jamil, Farhana Wan Yunus

Abstract:

Robot-based intervention for children with autism is an evolving research niche in human-robot interaction (HRI). Recent studies in this area mostly covered the role of robots in the clinical and experimental setting. Our previous work had shown that interaction with a robot pose no adverse effects on the children. Also, the presence of the robot, together with specific modules of interaction was associated with less autistic behavior. Extending this impact on school-going children, interactions that are in-tune with special education lessons are needed. This methodological paper focuses on how a robot can be incorporated in a current learning environment for autistic children. Six interaction scenarios had been designed based on the existing syllabus to teach communication skills, using the Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) technique as the framework. Development of the robotic experience in class also covers the required set-up involving participation from teachers. The actual research conduct involving autistic children, teachers and robot shall take place in the next phase.

Keywords: ASD, Autism spectrum disorder, Humanoid Robot, Communication Skills, robot-assisted learning

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10 Role of Environmental Risk Factors in Autism Spectrum Disorder

Authors: Laila Al-Ayadhi, Dost Muhammad Halepoto

Abstract:

Neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism can cause lifelong disability. Genetic and environmental factors are believed to contribute to the development of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but relatively few studies have considered potential environmental risks. Several industrial chemicals and other environmental exposures are recognized causes of neurodevelopmental disorders and subclinical brain dysfunction. The toxic effects of such chemicals in the developing human brain are not known. This review highlights the role of environmental risk factors including drugs, toxic chemicals, heavy metals, pesticides, vaccines, and other suspected neurotoxicants including persistent organic pollutants for ASD. It also provides information about the environmental toxins to yield new insights into factors that affect autism risk as well as an opportunity to investigate the relation between autism and environmental exposure.

Keywords: ASD, Environmental Factors, Autism spectrum disorder, neurodevelopmental disorder

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9 Stereotypical Motor Movement Recognition Using Microsoft Kinect with Artificial Neural Network

Authors: M. Jazouli, S. Elhoufi, A. Majda, A. Zarghili, R. Aalouane

Abstract:

Autism spectrum disorder is a complex developmental disability. It is defined by a certain set of behaviors. Persons with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) frequently engage in stereotyped and repetitive motor movements. The objective of this article is to propose a method to automatically detect this unusual behavior. Our study provides a clinical tool which facilitates for doctors the diagnosis of ASD. We focus on automatic identification of five repetitive gestures among autistic children in real time: body rocking, hand flapping, fingers flapping, hand on the face and hands behind back. In this paper, we present a gesture recognition system for children with autism, which consists of three modules: model-based movement tracking, feature extraction, and gesture recognition using artificial neural network (ANN). The first one uses the Microsoft Kinect sensor, the second one chooses points of interest from the 3D skeleton to characterize the gestures, and the last one proposes a neural connectionist model to perform the supervised classification of data. The experimental results show that our system can achieve above 93.3% recognition rate.

Keywords: ASD, Artificial Neural Network, kinect, stereotypical motor movements

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8 Detection of Autism Spectrum Disorders in Children Aged 4-6 Years by Municipal Maternal and Child Health Physicians: An Educational Intervention Study

Authors: M. Van 'T Hof, R. V. Pasma, J. T. Bailly, H. W. Hoek, W. A. Ester

Abstract:

Background: The transition into primary school can be challenging for children with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Due to the new demands that are made to children in this period, their limitations in social functioning and school achievements may manifest and appear faster. Detection of possible ASD signals mainly takes place by parents, teachers and during obligatory municipal maternal and child health centre visits. Physicians of municipal maternal and child health centres have limited education and instruments to detect ASD. Further education on detecting ASD is needed to optimally equip these doctors for this task. Most research aims to increase the early detection of ASD in children aged 0-3 years and shows positive results. However, there is a lack of research on educational interventions to detect ASD in children aged 4-6 years by municipal maternal and child health physicians. Aim: The aim of this study is to explore the effect of the online educational intervention: Detection of ASD in children aged 4-6 years for municipal maternal and child health physicians. This educational intervention is developed within The Reach-Aut Academic Centre for Autism; Transitions in education, and will be available throughout The Netherlands. Methods: Ninety-two participants will follow the educational intervention: Detection of ASD in children aged 4-6 years for municipal maternal and child health centre physicians. The educational intervention consists of three, one and a half hour sessions, which are offered through an online interactive classroom. The focus and content of the course has been developed in collaboration with three groups of stakeholders; autism scientists, clinical practitioners (municipal maternal and child health doctors and ASD experts) and parents of children with ASD. The primary outcome measure is knowledge about ASD: signals, early detection, communication with parents and referrals. The secondary outcome measures are the number of ASD related referrals, the attitude towards the mentally ill (CAMI), perceived competency about ASD knowledge and detection skills, and satisfaction about the educational intervention. Results and Conclusion: The study started in January 2016 and data collection will end mid 2017.

Keywords: Child, Detection, ASD, educational intervention, physicians

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7 The Relationship between Hot and Cool Executive Function and Theory of Mind in School-Aged Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Authors: Evangelia-Chrysanthi Kouklari, Stella Tsermentseli, Claire P. Monks

Abstract:

Executive function (EF) refers to a set of future-oriented and goal-directed cognitive skills that are crucial for problem solving and social behaviour, as well as the ability to organise oneself. It has been suggested that EF could be conceptualised as two distinct but interrelated constructs, one emotional (hot) and one cognitive (cool), as it facilitates both affective and cognitive regulation. Cool EF has been found to be strongly related to Theory of Mind (ToM) that is the ability to infer mental states, but research has not taken into account the association between hot EF and ToM in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) to date. The present study investigates the associations between both hot and cool EF and ToM in school-aged children with ASD. This cross-sectional study assesses 79 school-aged children with ASD (7-15 years) and 91 controls matched for age and IQ, on tasks tapping cool EF (working memory, inhibition, planning), hot EF (effective decision making, delay discounting), and ToM (emotional understanding and false/no false belief). Significant group differences in each EF measure support a global executive dysfunction in ASD. Strong associations between hot EF and ToM in ASD are reported for the first time (i.e. ToM emotional understanding and delay discounting). These findings highlight that hot EF also makes a unique contribution to the developmental profile of ASD. Considering the role of both hot and cool EF in association with ToM in individuals with ASD may aid in gaining a greater understanding not just of how these complex multifaceted cognitive abilities relate to one another, but their joint role in the distinct developmental pathway followed in ASD.

Keywords: Theory of Mind, ASD, executive function, school age

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6 The Comparative Electroencephalogram Study: Children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder and Healthy Children Evaluate Classical Music in Different Ways

Authors: Galina Portnova, Kseniya Gladun

Abstract:

In our EEG experiment participated 27 children with ASD with the average age of 6.13 years and the average score for CARS 32.41 and 25 healthy children (of 6.35 years). Six types of musical stimulation were presented, included Gluck, Javier-Naida, Kenny G, Chopin and other classic musical compositions. Children with autism showed orientation reaction to the music and give behavioral responses to different types of music, some of them might assess stimulation by scales. The participants were instructed to remain calm. Brain electrical activity was recorded using a 19-channel EEG recording device, 'Encephalan' (Russia, Taganrog). EEG epochs lasting 150 s were analyzed using EEGLab plugin for MatLab (Mathwork Inc.). For EEG analysis we used Fast Fourier Transform (FFT), analyzed Peak alpha frequency (PAF), correlation dimension D2 and Stability of rhythms. To express the dynamics of desynchronizing of different rhythms we've calculated the envelope of the EEG signal, using the whole frequency range and a set of small narrowband filters using Hilbert transformation. Our data showed that healthy children showed similar EEG spectral changes during musical stimulation as well as described the feelings induced by musical fragments. The exception was the ‘Chopin. Prelude’ fragment (no.6). This musical fragment induced different subjective feeling, behavioral reactions and EEG spectral changes in children with ASD and healthy children. The correlation dimension D2 was significantly lower in autists compared to healthy children during musical stimulation. Hilbert envelope frequency was reduced in all group of subjects during musical compositions 1,3,5,6 compositions compared to the background. During musical fragments 2 and 4 (terrible) lower Hilbert envelope frequency was observed only in children with ASD and correlated with the severity of the disease. Alfa peak frequency was lower compared to the background during this musical composition in healthy children and conversely higher in children with ASD.

Keywords: ASD, electroencephalogram (EEG), emotional perception, musical perception, childhood Autism rating scale (CARS)

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5 Intensive Neurophysiological Rehabilitation System: New Approach for Treatment of Children with Autism

Authors: V. I. Kozyavkin, L. F. Shestopalova, T. B. Voloshyn

Abstract:

Introduction: Rehabilitation of children with Autism is the issue of the day in psychiatry and neurology. It is attributed to constantly increasing quantity of autistic children - Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD) Existing rehabilitation approaches in treatment of children with Autism improve their medico- social and social- psychological adjustment. Experience of treatment for different kinds of Autistic disorders in International Clinic of Rehabilitation (ICR) reveals the necessity of complex intensive approach for healing this malady and wider implementation of a Kozyavkin method for treatment of children with ASD. Methods: 19 children aged from 3 to 14 years were examined. They were diagnosed ‘Autism’ (F84.0) with comorbid neurological pathology (from pyramidal insufficiency to para- and tetraplegia). All patients underwent rehabilitation in ICR during two weeks, where INRS approach was used. INRS included methods like biomechanical correction of the spine, massage, physical therapy, joint mobilization, wax-paraffin applications. They were supplemented by art- therapy, ergotherapy, rhythmical group exercises, computer game therapy, team Olympic games and other methods for improvement of motivation and social integration of the child. Estimation of efficacy was conducted using parent’s questioning and done twice- on the onset of INRS rehabilitation course and two weeks afterward. For efficacy assessment of rehabilitation of autistic children in ICR standardized tool was used, namely Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (ATEC). This scale was selected because any rehabilitation approaches for the child with Autism can be assessed using it. Results: Before the onset of INRS treatment mean score according to ATEC scale was 64,75±9,23, it reveals occurrence in examined children severe communication, speech, socialization and behavioral impairments. After the end of the rehabilitation course, the mean score was 56,5±6,7, what indicates positive dynamics in comparison to the onset of rehabilitation. Generally, improvement of psychoemotional state occurred in 90% of cases. Most significant changes occurred in the scope of speech (16,5 before and 14,5 after the treatment), socialization (15.1 before and 12,5 after) and behavior (20,1 before and 17.4 after). Conclusion: As a result of INRS rehabilitation course reduction of autistic symptoms was noted. Particularly improvements in speech were observed (children began to spell out new syllables, words), there was some decrease in signs of destructiveness, quality of contact with the surrounding people improved, new skills of self-service appeared. The prospect of the study is further, according to evidence- based medicine standards, deeper examination of INRS and assessment of its usefulness in treatment for Autism and ASD.

Keywords: Rehabilitation, ASD, intensive neurophysiological rehabilitation system (INRS), international clinic od rehabilitation

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4 Pitch Processing in Autistic Mandarin-Speaking Children with Hypersensitivityand Hypo-Sensitivity: An Event-Related Potential Study

Authors: Yang Zhang, Kaiying Lai, Suiping Wang, Luodi Yu, Pengmin Qin

Abstract:

Abnormalities in auditory processing are one of the most commonly reported sensory processing impairments in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Tonal language speaker with autism has enhanced neural sensitivity to pitch changes in pure tone. However, not all children with ASD exhibit the same performance in pitch processing due to different auditory sensitivity. The current study aimed to examine auditory change detection in ASD with different auditory sensitivity. K-means clustering method was adopted to classify ASD participants into two groups according to the auditory processing scores of the Sensory Profile, 11 autism with hypersensitivity (mean age = 11.36 ; SD = 1.46) and 18 with hypo-sensitivity (mean age = 10.64; SD = 1.89) participated in a passive auditory oddball paradigm designed for eliciting mismatch negativity (MMN) under the pure tone condition. Results revealed that compared to hypersensitive autism, the children with hypo-sensitivity showed smaller MMN responses to pure tone stimuli. These results suggest that ASD with auditory hypersensitivity and hypo-sensitivity performed differently in processing pure tone, so neural responses to pure tone hold promise for predicting the auditory sensitivity of ASD and targeted treatment in children with ASD.

Keywords: ASD, mismatch negativity, sensory profile, pitch processing, MMN

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3 Analysis of the Use of a NAO Robot to Improve Social Skills in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Saudi Arabia

Authors: Nor Shahriza Abdul Karim, Eman Alarfaj, Hissah Alabdullatif, Huda Alabdullatif, Ghazal Albakri

Abstract:

Autism Spectrum Disorder is extensively spread amid children; it affects their social, communication and interactive skills. As robotics technology has been proven to be a significant helpful utility those able individuals to overcome their disabilities. Robotic technology is used in ASD therapy. The purpose of this research is to show how Nao robots can improve the social skills for children who suffer from autism in Saudi Arabia by interacting with the autistic child and perform a number of tasks. The objective of this research is to identify, implement, and test the effectiveness of the module for interacting with ASD children in an autism center in Saudi Arabia. The methodology in this study followed the ten layers of protocol that needs to be followed during any human-robot interaction. Also, in order to elicit the scenario module, TEACCH Autism Program was adopted. Six different qualified interaction modules have been elicited and designed in this study; the robot will be programmed to perform these modules in a series of controlled interaction sessions with the Autistic children to enhance their social skills.

Keywords: Human-Robot Interaction, Social Skills, ASD, humanoid robot Nao

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2 Characteristics of Autism Spectrum Disorder Patient and Perception of Caregiver Regarding Speech and Language Therapy in Bangladesh

Authors: K. M. Saif Ur Rahman, Razib Mamun, Himica Arjuman, Fida Al Shams

Abstract:

Introduction: Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has become an emerging neurodevelopmental disorder with increasing prevalence. It has become an important public health issue globally. Many approaches including speech and language therapy (SLT), occupational therapy, behavioral therapy etc. are being applied for the betterment of the ASD patients. This study aims to describe the characteristics of ASD patients and perception of caregiver regarding SLT in Bangladesh. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in a therapy and rehabilitation center at Dhaka city. Caregivers of 48 ASD patients responded regarding their perception of SLT and characteristics of patients. Results: Among 48 ASD patients, 56.3% were between 3 to 5 years age group with a male predominance (87.5%). More than half of the participants (56.3%) initiated SLT at the age of 1-3 years and the majority (43.8%) were taking SLT for less than 1 year. Majority of the patients (64.6%) were taken to a physician for healthcare as a first contact of which 29.2% were referred to SLT by physicians. More than half (56.3%) of the caregivers were moderately satisfied with SLT and most of them (62.5%) mentioned moderate improvement through SLT. Improvement rate was 10-15% in specific symptoms such as eye contact, complex mannerism, pointing, imitation etc. Conclusion: This study reveals the self-reported perception of caregivers on SLT. Despite reported improvements, more exploration of different approaches and intervention for management of ASD is recommended.

Keywords: Characteristics, ASD, Bangladesh, SLT

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1 Teaching Practitioners to Use Technology to Support and Instruct Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Authors: Nicole Nicholson, Anne Spillane

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The purpose of this quantitative, descriptive analysis was to determine the success of a post-graduate new teacher education program, designed to teach educators the knowledge and skills necessary to use technology in the classroom, improve the ability to communicate with stakeholders, and implement EBPs and UDL principles into instruction for students with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorders ). The success of candidates (n=20) in the program provided evidence as to how candidates were effectively able to use technology to create meaningful learning opportunities and implement EBPs for individuals with ASD. ≥90% of participants achieved the following competencies: podcast creation; technology used to share information about assistive technology; and created a resource website on ASD (including information on EBPs, local and national support groups, ASD characteristics, and the latest research on ASD). 59% of students successfully created animation. Results of the analysis indicated that the teacher education program was successful in teaching candidates desired competencies during its first year of implementation.

Keywords: Autism Spectrum Disorders, ASD, Universal design for learning, UDL, evidence based practices, EBP

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