Utilization of socially assistive robots in recreational therapy





recreational therapy, socially assistive robots, intervention, emerging technology, SARs training


Socially assistive robots (SARs) may impact health outcomes when facilitated by recreational therapists (RTs). It is unclear if RTs have the knowledge or perceive SARs as a relevant facilitation technique. This study sought to understand if a professional continuing education session on SARs improves comfort level. Seventy RTs and students attended the training and completed a retrospective survey. The findings suggest that the training improved participants’ interest and willingness to incorporate SARs, felt less intimidated by the prospect of incorporating SARs, less afraid of making a mistake while using SARs, and found SARs to be a relevant intervention. Further studies are warranted to understand the use of SARs within RT practice. Incorporating emerging technology into practice may create innovative therapeutic interventions to address clinical outcomes.


Author Biographies

Lori Eldridge, MS, CTRS, Prevention Insights, School of Public Health, Indiana University, Bloo

Prevention Insights, School of Public Health, Indiana University, Bloomington, Bloomington, Indiana

Shinichi Nagata, PhD, CTRS

Faculty of Health and Sport Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan; College of Public Health, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Jennifer Piatt, PhD, CTRS

School of Public Health, Indiana University, Bloomington, Bloomington, Indiana

Cedomir Stanojevic, MS, EAT, CTRS

School of Public Health, Indiana University, Bloomington, Bloomington, Indiana

Selma Šabanović, PhD

Informatics and Cognitive Science, Director of Graduate Studies, Informatics, School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana

Casey Bennett, PhD

School of Intelligence, Hanyang University, Seoul, South Korea; College of Computing and Digital Media, DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois

Natasha Randall, MS

School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana


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How to Cite

Eldridge, MS, CTRS, Prevention Insights, School of Public Health, Indiana University, Bloo, L., Nagata, PhD, CTRS, S., Piatt, PhD, CTRS, J., Stanojevic, MS, EAT, CTRS, C., Šabanović, PhD, S., Bennett, PhD, C., & Randall, MS, N. (2020). Utilization of socially assistive robots in recreational therapy. American Journal of Recreation Therapy, 19(2), 35–45. https://doi.org/10.5055/ajrt.2020.0212




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