Preschool-based Interventions to Promote Peer Interactions of Children with Autism : A Systematic Literature Review from 2010-2022

University essay from Jönköping University/Högskolan för lärande och kommunikation

Abstract: Autism often makes children struggle to interact with peers, including initiating, responding, and maintaining social interactions in social settings. They may frequently miss opportunities to engage with peers; they get alienated and tend to appear outside peer activities, restricting opportunities for developing relationships. The time that a child spends in preschool and with peers is crucial for their social skills to develop. Over time, their peers will have a more significant influence on them. This systematic literature review aimed to describe the preschool-based intervention for children with Autism to increase their peer interaction. The search was conducted using three databases (ERIC, PsycINFO, and Web of Science), and seven studies were then selected that met predefined inclusion criteria. The current review includes different interventions such as Peer-mediated intervention, preferred Activities with Peer Support, iPod Touch™, Technology as Communication Devices, and Peer-Mediated LEGO® Play intervention. The seven selected articles conducted an intervention to improve peer interaction of children with Autism. The majority of the reviewed studies found that peer interaction interventions improved the social interaction of children with Autism.  As the limitation of the study, the lack of research focusing on preschool-based children with autism spectrum disorders and the interventions available to them were highlighted.

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