Teaching Robotics Coding to a Student with ASD and Severe Problem Behavior

  • Victoria F. KnightEmail author
  • John Wright
  • Andrea DeFreese
Letter to the Editor


Research on teaching STEM, especially in the areas of teaching coding for students with ASD, is lacking. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the effects of using model-lead-test to teach an elementary-aged student with ASD and severe problem behavior the following dependent variables: (a) calibrating the robot; (b) drawing tracks for the robot to follow; and (c) creating a code (e.g., to make the robot move quickly). Results of the multiple probe across skills design demonstrate a functional relation between the model-lead-test strategy and the acquisition of all of the skills. Further, he generalized the coding skill to novel codes, and maintained the skills over time. Implications, study limitations, and recommendations for future research are discussed.


Robotics Programming Coding Autism spectrum disorder Emotional behavior disorder STEM 


Author Contributions

VFK and JW conceived of the presented idea, developed the data collection method, as well as the intervention procedures. VFK recommended the experimental design. JW recommended the materials used and implemented the intervention and VFK supervised the project. All authors discussed the results of the experiment and a focus for the paper. AD wrote a draft of the initial manuscript as an undergraduate student. VFK revised the initial draft to prepare for publication, responded to reviewers, and completed the final version.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victoria F. Knight
    • 1
    Email author
  • John Wright
    • 2
  • Andrea DeFreese
    • 2
  1. 1.University of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Vanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA

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