Document Type : Original Article
Professor of Shahid Beheshti University, Faculty of Psychology and Education Tehran, Iran
MSC Psychology, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran
PHD student clinical psychology, Shahid Beheshti university, Tehran. Iran
Psychology, Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran
Aim: The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness of LEGO therapy on social skills and symptoms reduction in children with high-functioning Autism (HFA). Method: The study followed a single-subject design. The statistical population included 65 children with HFA (aged between 6 to10 years), 10 of which were selected through the convenience sampling from two centers: The center for the treatment of Autistic disorders (CTAD) and Behara Center for the treatment of Autistic disorders. The sample divided into small groups. Each group received 16 sessions of LEGO play. The duration of each session was about 60 minutes, twice a week. The assessments were repeated six times: Two baselines with two weeks interval, in the 8th session, one day after the end of the treatment and two follow-up sessions (two weeks and one month after termination of intervention). Gilliam Autism rating scale (Gilliam, 1995) and Autism social skills profile (Bellini and Bellini, ASSP; Bellini & Hopf, 2007) were administered during assessments. Data analyses included visual analyses/charts and effect sizes. Results: Results have shown that social skill scores have increased in the sample. The symptoms of autism (social interaction/communication problems) declined, while no change has observed in repetitive behavior score. The effect sizes have also shown that LEGO therapy could be effective in improving social skills and reducing the communication deficiencies in children with HFA. Conclusion: The results of this study support the role of LEGO therapy in improving social skills and social competence in children with HFA.