Animal-assisted interventions for school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder: a meta-analysis

Dimolareva, M and Dunn, T.J (2021) 'Animal-assisted interventions for school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder: a meta-analysis.' Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 51 (7). pp. 2436-2449. ISSN 0162-3257

Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-020-04715-w

Abstract

Research has indicated beneficial effects of Animal-Assisted Interventions (AAIs) for children with Autism. However, there is a dearth of meta-analyses and findings are often contradictory. The current meta-analysis assesses the effectiveness of AAIs on social interaction, communication and global Autism symptoms. A total of 1447 studies were returned, of which 16 (n = 489) met the inclusion criteria. The meta-analyses indicated small effect sizes related to improvements in social interaction and communication and reduction in Autism Spectrum Disorder symptoms. Additionally, there was little evidence for a relationship between dosage and effect size. In conclusion, AAIs appear to offer small improvements in social interaction and communication for children with Autism, which may be comparable to activities used in active control conditions.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: animal-assisted interventions, autism, children, school-age
Divisions: School of Sciences
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-020-04715-w
Date Deposited: 22 Nov 2021 19:12
Last Modified: 22 Nov 2021 19:12
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