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Evaluating the Child–Robot Interaction of the NAOTherapist Platform in Pediatric Rehabilitation


NAOTherapist is a cognitive robotic architecture whose main goal is to develop non-contact upper-limb rehabilitation sessions autonomously with a social robot for patients with physical impairments. In order to achieve a fluent interaction and an active engagement with the patients, the system should be able to adapt by itself in accordance with the perceived environment. In this paper, we describe the interaction mechanisms that are necessary to supervise and help the patient to carry out the prescribed exercises correctly. We also provide an evaluation focused on the child-robot interaction of the robotic platform with a large number of schoolchildren and the experience of a first contact with three pediatric rehabilitation patients. The results presented are obtained through questionnaires, video analysis and system logs, and have proven to be consistent with the hypotheses proposed in this work.

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  1. Video of the NAOTherapist use case:

  2. Online videos of the evaluations in the HUVR:

    Patient A:

    Patient B:

    Patient C:


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Correspondence to José Carlos Pulido.


Children’s Questionnaire

  1. Q1.

    Was it easy to understand what to do with the robot?

  2. Q2.

    Do you think the robot is alive?

  3. Q3.

    Do you think the robot was gazing at you?

  4. Q4.

    Did you feel overwhelmed when the robot talked to you?

  5. Q5.

    Do you think the robot speaks too much?

  6. Q6

    Do you think the robot has feelings?

  7. Q7.

    Choose five adjectives to describe the robot

  8. Q8.

    What name would you give to the robot?

  9. Q9.

    How old do you think the robot is?

  10. Q10.

    Would you like to have this robot at home?

  11. Q11.

    Would you like to be treated by the robot?

  12. Q12.

    Do you think the robot can see you?

  13. Q13a.

    Do you think the robot can hear you?

  14. Q13b.

    Do you think the robot is glad when you play together?

  15. Q13c.

    Would you like to do more exercises with the robot?

  16. Q13d.

    Which games would you want to play with the robot?

  17. Q15.

    Did the robot correct an actual correct pose?

  18. Q16.

    Which exercise did you like most?

  19. Q17.

    Which exercise was the most difficult?

  20. Q18a.

    Did you understand the descriptions of the exercises?

  21. Q18b.

    Were the exercises tiring?

  22. Q18c.

    Did the lights of the eyes help you to do the exercises?

  23. Q19a.

    Were the exercises boring?

  24. Q19b.


Observers and Experts’ Questionnaire

  1. Q1.

    Did the child understand what to do?

  2. Q2.

    Are the movements of the robot natural?

  3. Q3.

    Did the child perform the movements naturally?

  4. Q4.

    Was the child overwhelmed during the session?

  5. Q5.

    Did the robot correct an actual correct pose?

  6. Q6.

    Was the session carried out fluently?

  7. Q7.

    Was the child very committed to the session?

  8. Q8.

    Was this experience beneficial for the child?

  9. Q9.

    Did the child make a great effort to finish the session?

  10. Q10.

    Is this system a useful tool for physiotherapy?

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Pulido, J.C., González, J.C., Suárez-Mejías, C. et al. Evaluating the Child–Robot Interaction of the NAOTherapist Platform in Pediatric Rehabilitation. Int J of Soc Robotics 9, 343–358 (2017).

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  • Social human–robot interaction
  • Rehabilitation robotics
  • Socially assistive robotics
  • Control architectures and programming
  • Automated planning