Innovative Therapy Approaches in Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Compilation on Virtual Reality and Social Skill Development

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ASD, VR, Social Development, Social Skills


Following the worldwide increase of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), innovative and effective techniques for assessment, diagnosis and treatment have become necessary. Virtual reality (VR) technology draws theoretical support from rehabilitation and pedagogical theories. The first reason is that VR theory offers a variety of capabilities in children with ASD in educational and interventional contexts. VR is increasingly gaining attention in the medical and health sector as it provides fully interactive three-dimensional simulations of real-world environments and social situations, which are particularly suitable for cognitive and performance training, including social and interaction skills (Zhang et al., 2022).  This study aims to examine the use of virtual reality (VR) technology as an alternative to traditional social skills learning methods for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). ASD is a developmental disorder with difficulties in social interaction and communication skills, and these difficulties can limit social interactions in daily life. While traditional learning methods use tools such as paper, recordings or video to explain and model social skills, this study explores how VR technology can offer a new approach to practicing social skills with children with ASD. This review article presents current perspectives on children with ASD with a primary focus on social communication, including social functioning, emotion recognition and language. Limitations related to technology and design as well as controversies regarding the application of VR in autism research and therapy are still debated. Application expansion and improvement, technology development, linguistic diversity, and the development of theoretical models and brain-based research in children with ASD are even more important today (Zhang et al., 2022). Studies in the literature show that VR has a significant increase in successful social skills performance. These results provide preliminary scientific evidence that VR-based learning environments can contribute to social skills development for children with ASD. Our study provides a foundation for future studies and highlights the existence of a novel learning approach to support children with ASD to be more successful in the social world.


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How to Cite

Ölmez, S. (2023). Innovative Therapy Approaches in Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Compilation on Virtual Reality and Social Skill Development. Atlas Journal, 9(52), 95–103.