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Virtual Learning Enhances Neural Health In Adults With Autism (incl. video)

“A clinician-driven virtual learning platform, tailored to young adults on the autism spectrum, results in improved social competency, a pilot study shows.

The findings, from researchers at the Center for BrainHealth at The University of Texas at Dallas, in collaboration with co-leading authors at George Washington University and Yale, reveal that increases in socio-emotional and socio-cognitive abilities correlate with brain change.

Results included increased activation in the right posterior superior temporal sulcus, the brain’s socio-cognition hub, with gains linked to improvement on an empathy measure.”

by Dan Modano, Reliawire

Image: Reliawire

Read more: https://reliawire.com/virtual-learning-autism-cognition/

Researchers are using VR to help teachers understand autism (incl. video)

“Researchers [at the University of Malta] are using VR as an empathy tool to help neurotypical teachers understand their students with autism.

The researchers created a VR application that would help replicate the experience of an autistic child in their classroom, by the use of audio and visual tricks.

The person from whose perspective the film is shot sometimes doesn’t fully process stimuli, and a sense of distress is conveyed by a blurring of peripheral vision.”

By Rachel Kaser at The Next Web

Image: University of Malta

Read more: https://thenextweb.com/virtual-reality/2018/04/05/researchers-using-vr-help-teachers-understand-autism/

How virtual reality is transforming nursing and midwifery learning (incl. video)

“The University of Newcastle (Australia) is using virtual and augmented reality technologies to transform how nursing and midwifery trainees learn.

Under the university’s ‘Road to Birth’ pilot project, students at Newcastle University’s School of Nursing & Midwifery … are being guided visually through the internal stages of childbearing.

It is designed for use as an adjunct to the current pedagogical approaches to teaching.”

By Byron Connolly, CIO Australia

Image: University of Newcastle

Read more: https://www.cio.com.au/article/634416/how-virtual-reality-transforming-learning-university-newcastle/

Virtual Reality training puts adopters, foster carers and social workers into the mind of an abused child (incl. video)

“You could be forgiven for thinking that after adopting nine children over the past 27 years, Sue Clifford has seen it all in terms of training for working with vulnerable young people who have experienced abuse and trauma.

But she had never tried Virtual Reality until a new Restorative Caring pilot by the Cornerstone Project was launched.

The pilot programme, currently in its first wave of partnerships, puts adopters like Sue and foster carers and social workers in the mind of a child as they experience abuse and neglect.

She says she found the experience invaluable when going forward with her children.”

By Luke Stevenson, Community Care

Image: Cornerstone

Read more: http://www.communitycare.co.uk/2018/02/08/virtual-reality-can-help-give-social-workers-adopters-carers-new-insight-child-abuse/

Virtual reality therapy provides medical treatment alternative (incl. video)

“Phobias, those extreme or irrational fears people have of maybe heights, or spiders, can make normal life difficult for many sufferers.

But in Mexico, one student engineer has come up with an innovative way to treat patients’ conditions, using Virtual Reality (VR) technology to gradually expose them to their fears.

The VR technology reflects the reality that a patient is afraid of.

Fear of the dark is treated by gradually fading light within the headset, while patients with a fear of heights experience the simulation of gradually ascending from a virtual ground level.”

By Alasdair Baverstock, CGTN America

Read more: https://america.cgtn.com/2018/01/25/virtual-reality-therapy-provides-medical-treatment-alternative

Dementia patients use virtual reality to relive famous 1950s moment (incl. video)

“A virtual reality project is helping elderly people with dementia by recreating moments from the 1950s.

Care home residents in Surrey have been using cardboard headsets to watch a 360-degree video immersing them in the Queen’s Coronation Day celebrations from 1953.

Anyone can experience ‘The Wayback’ film for free using a phone and a cardboard headset.”

By Gemma Evans, Sky News

Image: The Wayback and Sky News

Read more: https://news.sky.com/story/dementia-patients-use-virtual-reality-to-relive-famous-1950s-moment-11212972

Link to The Wayback project: http://thewaybackvr.com

How virtual reality therapy is treating pain in West Sussex (video)

“Horsham District Council is the first council in the UK to introduce a new form of virtual reality therapy for those with long term medical conditions. The council’s Community Link team is championing a virtual reality experience for the benefit of people with dementia and those living with long term medical conditions.

The therapy is based on the use of a headset which creates a virtual reality environment for users, helping them become immersed within a variety of different scenes.

Chosen scenes include experiences such as starlit skies, forests full of animals, dolphins swimming and nostalgic “days out” to beaches with the sound of the sea lapping on the shore.”

By Spirit FM

Image: Tribemix/ImmersiCare

Read more: https://www.spiritfm.net/news/sussex-news/2447092/watch-how-virtual-reality-therapy-is-treating-pain-in-west-sussex/

Virtual reality technology helping kids with sensory challenges like autism (incl. video)

“For kids with sensory challenges like autism, everyday experiences like popping down to the supermarket, crossing the road or swimming in the sea can be absolutely terrifying. 

But one Christchurch school has introduced something to try and bridge this gap.

With help from electronics giant Samsung, Allenvale School got hold of some virtual reality goggles.

And they’re proving a much needed portal for 10-year-old Kingston Friggin to enjoy school, where he once hated it.”

By Seven Sharp at TV New Zealand

Read more: https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/virtual-reality-technology-helping-kids-sensory-challenges-like-autism-v1

Virtual reality reduces phantom pain in paraplegics (incl. video)

“Virtual reality reduces phantom body pain in paraplegics and creates the illusion that they can feel their paralyzed legs being touched again.

The results could one day translate into therapies to reduce chronic pain in paraplegics.

In breakthrough research led by neuroscientist Olaf Blanke and his team at EPFL, Switzerland, the scientists show that phantom body pain can be reduced in paraplegics by creating a bodily illusion with the help of virtual reality. The results are published in Neurology.”


Image, text and video provided by Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL)

Read more: https://actu.epfl.ch/news/virtual-reality-reduces-phantom-pain-in-paraplegic/

The Party: a virtual experience of autism – 360 video

“What is it like to be autistic? The Guardian’s latest VR film offers a glimpse of how a person on the autism spectrum copes with a stressful environment.

The Party allows you to enter the world of an autistic teenager, Layla, who is at a surprise birthday celebration. You will hear her thoughts about what she is experiencing and how it is affecting her, and share the sensory overload that leads to a meltdown (an intense response to an overwhelming situation).

The drama provides viewers with a powerful first-person perspective on the challenges that social situations may present to someone on the autism spectrum.”

By Anrick Bregman, Shehani Fernando and Lucy Hawking at The Guardian online.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/oct/07/the-party-a-virtual-experience-of-autism-360-video