Troubles in social communication as well as deficits in the cognitive treatment of emotions are supposed to be a fundamental part of autism. We present a case study based on multimodal interaction between a mobile robot and a child with autism in spontaneous, free game play. This case study tells us that the robot mediates the interaction between the autistic child and therapist once the robot-child interaction has been established. In addition, the child uses the robot as a mediator to express positive emotion playing with the therapist. It is thought that the three-pronged interaction i.e., child-robot-therapist could better facilitate the transfer of social and emotional abilities to real life settings. Robot therapy has a high potential to improve the condition of brain activity in autistic children.
Giannopulu, I., & Pradel, G. (2012). From child-robot interaction to child-robot-therapist interaction: A case study in autism. Applied Bionics and Biomechanics, 9(2), 173–179. https://doi.org/10.3233/JAD-2011-0042