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06/25/2017

Developing Friendships and an Awareness of Emotions Using Video Games: Perceptions of Four Young Adults with Autism


Developing Friendships and an Awareness of Emotions Using Video Games: Perceptions of Four Young Adults with Autism

Jennifer Gallup and Barbara Serianni

 

Abstract: This article explores emotional expression and awareness in the context of a virtual environment specific to young adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and how emotional awareness and expression can support postsecondary outcomes.  A qualitative study was conducted with five young adults with ASD who actively played a massively multiplayer online role playing game (MMORPG) in a virtual environment.  All participants were enrolled in a large urban university where interviews were conducted in the campus library.  One of the most significant findings was related to the emotional awareness and expression of the participants.  Advancements in virtual environments hold the potential to support social skills, friendship development, and emotional awareness and expression that will ultimately increase successful transitions through the development of support networks such as friendships and work-related relationships.

 
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