Effects of Participation in Inclusive Physical Activity on Social Skills of Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Sibel Nalbant


In the National Standards Report (2015) of the National Autism Centre, participation in physical activities in the education of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is defined to be a promising intervention method (scientific base being formed). On the other hand, as a result of the regulations on inclusion, there has been a rapid increase in the number of children with special needs studying in general education classes together with their peers. Based on these two tendencies in recent years, the objective of this study was determined to be the effect of participation in inclusive physical activity on social skill in children and youth with ASD. The participants of the study were 55 children with ASD between the ages of 6 and 26 including 15 girls and 40 boys who participated in the inclusive physical activity (IPAC) program with their peers having typical development for two days a week and 45 minutes a day during 3 months within the scope of the “Inclusive Physical Activity Centre” project of the Istanbul Gedik University. The applied IPAC program involved peer participation and supported specialized movement skills and development of physical and motor capabilities. The data of this research were gathered using a Personal Information Form and Autism Social Skill Profile (ASSP) by face-to-face interviews with the parents of the participants. The study was designed with the single group pretest-posttest model of quasi-experimental studies. The study after IPAC determined a significant difference in the subscales of the scale and in the ASSP-Total score (p<0.05). The findings of this study demonstrated the effectiveness of inclusive physical activity on the social skills of individuals with ASD. For the similar future studies, the use of the design with control group and supporting it with qualitative data for the detailed explanation of the results obtained by quantitative approach are recommended.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11114/jets.v6i12.3789


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Journal of Education and Training Studies  ISSN 2324-805X (Print)   ISSN 2324-8068 (Online)

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