Skip Navigation
Funding Opportunities | Search Funded Research Grants and Contracts

IES Contract

Title: Mirror Me: Gamified Movement Therapy in VR for Social-Emotional Learning
Center: NCER Year: 2023
Principal Investigator: Stauffer, Michael Awardee: Vizmoo, LLC
Program: Small Business Innovation Research      [Program Details]
Award Period: 8 months (06/23/2023 – 02/23/2024) Award Amount: $250,000
Type: Phase I Development Award Number: 91990023C0023

Purpose: Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is the most common neurodevelopmental disorder among children, with impaired communication and social interaction as the core criteria of a diagnosis. New interventions are needed to provide students with ASD practice initiating and responding to social interactions in order to facilitate engaging in the process of academic and social learning at school. The project team will develop a prototype of a game-based Virtual Reality (VR) music and movement experience to support social and emotional mirroring skills among students with ASD.

Project Activities: In Phase I, the research team will develop a virtual reality app prototype that engages students with ASD in a dance movement therapy game while embedding occupational therapy practices. The prototype will scaffold social learning through visual, auditory, and tactile feedback and generate cues to gradually desensitize student to social challenges. Gameplay will be implemented and managed by a therapist. At the end of Phase I, in a pilot study with 18 middle school students diagnosed with ASD and their therapists, researchers will examine if the prototype functions as intended, if students can complete and enjoy the session, and if students and therapists perceive that the prototype improved social learning outcomes.

Company Website: