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Assisted therapy is increasingly used in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) for improving social interaction and communication skills in recent years. A lot of studies have proven that the form of interactive games for therapy has a good effect on children with autism. Thus, our study provided an assisted therapeutic system based on Reinforcement Learning (RL) for children with ASD, which has five interactive subgames. As is well known, it is necessary to establish and maintain compelling interactions in therapeutic process. Therefore, we aim to adjust the interactive content according to the emotions of children with autism. However, due to the atypical and unusually differences in children with autism, most systems are based on off-line training of small samples of individuals and online recognition, so the existing assisted systems are limited in their ability to automatically update system parameters of new mappings. The integration of RL and Convolutional Neural Network (CNN)-Support Vector Regression (SVR) was used to deal with the updating online of prediction model's weights. The normalized emotion labels were evaluated by the therapists. Eleven children with autism as subjects were invited in this experiment and captured facial video images. The experiment lasted for five weeks of intermittent assisted therapy, and the results were evaluated for the system and the therapy effect. Finally, we achieved a general reduction in the root mean square error of the model prediction results and labels. Although there is no significant difference in Social Responsiveness Scale (SRS) scores before and after assisted therapy ( value = 0.60), in individual subjects (Sub. 1, Sub. 2 and Sub.3), the SRS total score is significantly reduced (Average drop of 19 points). These results demonstrate the effectiveness of prediction model based on RL and show the feasibility of assisted therapeutic system in children with autism.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Computer assisted surgery (Abingdon, England)
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