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Children with Asperger Syndrome and Computer Supported Collaborative Learning Activities: A Case Study in a 3rd Grade Mixed Class

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2 Author(s)
Kandroudi, M. ; Early Childhood Educ. Dept., Univ. of Western Macedonia, Florina, Greece ; Bratitsis, T.

The core aim of the research presented in the current paper, was to examine the social benefits derived from applying asynchronous discussions in a 3rd Grade class, concerning a pupil with Asperger's Syndrome. Asperger's Syndrome (AS) is characterized by difficulties in communication and social interaction. People with AS rarely face problems in cognitive development but they usually feel loneliness and anxiety because of the social isolation. It is proposed that computer based systems could enhance development of autonomy, encourage communication, boost self-confidence and reinforce optimism and respect for Asperger's Syndrome people. In support of this view, this survey was conducted via observation of a student's, with AS, changes in social interaction and communication abilities. The activity was implemented using the DIAS system, an asynchronous discussion platform with integrated interaction Analysis tools. The findings show that a remarkable improvement in her social skills occurred. In addition, she could develop conversation skills and engage in a purposeful interaction with others. Finally, the student was overwhelmed by feelings of happiness, although these were temporary.

Published in:

Intelligent Networking and Collaborative Systems (INCOS), 2010 2nd International Conference on

Date of Conference:

24-26 Nov. 2010