Development of a Robotic Device for Facilitating Learning by Children who have Severe Disabilities

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • This paper presents technical aspects of a robot manipulator developed to facilitate learning by young children who are generally unable to grasp objects or speak. The severity of these physical disabilities also limits assessment of their cognitive and language skills and abilities. The CRS robot manipulator was adapted for use by children who have disabilities. Our emphasis is on the technical control aspects of the development of an interface and communication environment between the child and the robot arm. The system is designed so that each child has user control and control procedures that are individually adapted. Control interfaces include large push buttons, keyboards, laser pointer, and head-controlled switches. Preliminary results have shown that young children who have severe disabilities can use the robotic arm system to complete functional play-related tasks. developed software allows the child to accomplish a series of multistep tasks by activating one or more single switches. through a single switch press the child can replay a series of preprogrammed movements that have a development sequence. Children using this system engaged in three-step sequential activities and were highly responsive to the robotic tasks. This was in marked contrast to other interventions using toys and computer games.

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  • Type of Item
    Article (Published)
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  • License
    Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 International
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  • Citation for previous publication
    • Cook, A.M., Meng, M.Q.H., Gu, J.J., & Howery, K. (2002). Development of a robotic device for facilitating learning by children who have severe disabilities. IEEE Transactions on Neural Systems and Rehabilitation Engineering, 10(3), 178-187.