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University of Southern California

1. Haikarainen, Riikka. Robot, my companion: children with autism take part in robotic experiments.

Degree: MA, Specialized Journalism, 2015, University of Southern California

Socially assistive robots are not only mechanical helpers but also engage in social interaction with humans. More than 20 robots have been used in experiments with children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, or ASD. Some scientists claim that robots can help children on the spectrum to engage socially, one of the biggest challenges for autistic kids. In the robot experiments, the interaction between children and robots has concentrated around the very basics of human interaction: eye-gaze following, non-verbal communication, and imitation. However, critics of social robotics have voiced concerns about our interactions with machines. As robots grow more prominent, we might start to feel safe in a robotic relationship that lacks the ups and downs of human interaction. The robot researchers working for children with autism argue that social robots are not meant to replace therapists but facilitate communication between the children and other humans. Advisors/Committee Members: Cole, K. C. (Committee Chair), Levitt, Pat R. (Committee Member), Bustamante, Peggy (Committee Member).

Subjects/Keywords: robots; autism spectrum disorder; autism; ASD; Autism Rights Movement; hyperstimulation; children; socially assistive robotics; human-robot interaction; HRI; social interaction; joint attention

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APA (6th Edition):

Haikarainen, R. (2015). Robot, my companion: children with autism take part in robotic experiments. (Masters Thesis). University of Southern California. Retrieved from http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/p15799coll3/id/606821/rec/5607

Chicago Manual of Style (16th Edition):

Haikarainen, Riikka. “Robot, my companion: children with autism take part in robotic experiments.” 2015. Masters Thesis, University of Southern California. Accessed April 19, 2019. http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/p15799coll3/id/606821/rec/5607.

MLA Handbook (7th Edition):

Haikarainen, Riikka. “Robot, my companion: children with autism take part in robotic experiments.” 2015. Web. 19 Apr 2019.

Vancouver:

Haikarainen R. Robot, my companion: children with autism take part in robotic experiments. [Internet] [Masters thesis]. University of Southern California; 2015. [cited 2019 Apr 19]. Available from: http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/p15799coll3/id/606821/rec/5607.

Council of Science Editors:

Haikarainen R. Robot, my companion: children with autism take part in robotic experiments. [Masters Thesis]. University of Southern California; 2015. Available from: http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/p15799coll3/id/606821/rec/5607

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