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Cognitive Assessment and Robot Skills of Children with Motor Impairments

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  • Currently, cognitive function of children with motor impairment is difficult to assess because most cognitive assessment tasks require manipulation of small objects and/or verbal intelligibility. Research has demonstrated that play using robots allows children with motor impairments to manipulate objects and experience activities that are comparable to those of typically developing children. (Cook, Adams, & Harbottle, 2007). Poletz, Encarnacao, Adams & Cook (2010) examined the cognitive concepts of causality, negation, binary logic and sequencing with typically developing children through robot facilitated tasks. This pilot study replicated the robot tasks with two children with motor impairments. The small sample size prevented comparisons with statistical analysis to be done; however consistencies observed between the two studies suggest that the robot tasks have the potential to be developed into a cognitive proxy measure. Changes in methodology to better standardize and increase the functional applications of the robot tasks are also discussed.

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    Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 International