Saad Elbeleidy and Aubrey Shick and Tom Williams
Proceedings of the Companion of the 16th ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction (HRI LBRs)
Therapist-operated robots can play a uniquely impactful role in helping children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) practice and acquire social skills. While extensive research within Human Robot Interaction has focused on teleoperation interfaces for robots in general, little work has been done on teleoperation interface design for robots in the context of ASD therapy. Moreover, while clinical research has shown the positive impact robots can have on children with Autism, much of that research has been performed in a controlled environment, with little understanding of the way these robots are used ``in the wild''. We analyze archival data of therapists teleoperating robots as part of their regular therapy sessions, to (1) determine common themes and difficulties in therapists' use of teleoperation interfaces, and (2) provide design recommendations to improve therapists' overall experience. We believe that following these recommendations will help maximize the effectiveness of ASD therapy with Socially Assistive Robots and the scale at which it can be deployed.