DataSheet_1_Data-Driven Discovery of Predictors of Virtual Reality Safety and Sense of Presence for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot St.docx (11.34 kB)
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DataSheet_1_Data-Driven Discovery of Predictors of Virtual Reality Safety and Sense of Presence for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot Study.docx

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posted on 04.08.2020, 10:10 by Mahan Malihi, Jenny Nguyen, Robyn E. Cardy, Salina Eldon, Cathy Petta, Azadeh Kushki

Virtual reality (VR) offers children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) an inexpensive and motivating medium to learn and practice skills in a personalized, controlled, and safe setting; however, outcomes of VR interventions can vary widely. In particular, there is a need to understand the predictors of VR experience in children with ASD to inform the design of these interventions. To address this gap, a sample of children with ASD (n=35, mean age: 13.0 ± 2.6 years; 10 female) participated in a pilot study involving an immersive VR experience delivered through a head-mounted display. A data-driven approach was used to discover predictors of VR safety and sense of presence among a range of demographic and phenotypic user characteristics. Our results suggest that IQ may be a key predictor of VR sense of presence and that anxiety may modify the association between IQ and sense of presence. In particular, in low-anxiety participants, IQ was linearly related to experienced spatial presence and engagement, whereas, in high-anxiety participants, this association followed a quadratic form. The results of this pilot study, when replicated in larger samples, will inform the design of future studies on VR interventions for children with ASD.

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