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Evaluating and Enhancing Driving Ability among Teens with Autism Spectrum Disorder

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Final rept. 30 Sep 2012-29 Mar 2015

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This study evaluated whether Virtual Reality Driving Simulation Training VRDST could improve VRDS performance, psychological comfort with driving, and on-road driving performance of young drivers with Autism Spectrum Disorder ASD holding a learner s permit. Procedure This multi-center study U.Va. and U.I. consented 73 young drivers age range 15-24, age 17.96, 78 male. Participants completed an assessment at time 0 and 3 months, which included parents completing questionnaires Social Responsiveness Scale-Second Edition SRS-2 and the Scale of Apprehensive Driving SAD and drivers completing driving simulator-based assessments of executive functioning and tactical driving skills. Following baseline assessment, drivers were randomized to one of four groups 1 Routine Training RT following the Department of Motor Vehicles DMV guidelines, 2 Standard VRDS training Standard where performance feedback was provided by a human trainer, 3 Automated VRDS training Automated, where the simulator provided real-time audio feedback e.g. too fast, too slow, swerving, across midline etc., or 4 StandardEye-Tracking Eye-Tracking, where drivers additionally viewed video feedback from eye-tracking technology informing where the driver was looking when executing different driving maneuvers, such as turning, going through intersections, etc. For the next two months, all drivers and parents were instructed to follow the DMV guidelines for behind-the-wheel training necessary for a full driver s license. Subjects assigned to groups 2-4 additionally received 10-12 one hour-long VRDST training sessions. Post assessment also included an on-road assessment administered by a certified driving instructor who was unaware of subjects previous group assignment and training experience.

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  • Medicine and Medical Research
  • Cybernetics

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