Using Mobile Technology in Schools to Develop Social Skills in Children with Autism: Teacher Attitude Makes All the Difference

Joseph Mintz (London South Bank University, UK)
Copyright: © 2013 |Pages: 317
EISBN13: 9781466625914|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-1933-3.ch014
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There has been developing interest in the potential for the use of mobile technology to achieve educational objectives, in particular for children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The HANDS (Helping Autism-diagnosed teenagers Navigate and Develop Socially) project has developed a software application for mobile phones, which helps children with ASD to develop social and self management skills. Two successive prototypes of this application have been implemented and tested with 15 teachers and 27 children with ASD at four special schools in the UK, Demark, Hungary, and Sweden. This chapter reports on issues involved with introducing this technology innovation at one of the schools. Interviews were undertaken with teachers on the project during the introduction of the technology. The extent to which teachers identify themselves as teachers of social skills development, which is often considered an expression of informal learning (Jordan, 2005), is identified as a key factor in determining the extent to which the successful engagement with the technology solution occurred.
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