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Table 3 Performance changes of GOLIAH trained children through sessions for all JA and imitation games

From: GOLIAH (Gaming Open Library for Intervention in Autism at Home): a 6-month single blind matched controlled exploratory study

Game type (variable, n = events) N Time effect Difficulty level effect Number of items effect
Imitation games
Imitate free drawing (Imitation score per drawing—n = 562) 13 Imitation score increases with session (β = 0.02, p = 0.036)* NA NA
Imitate step by step drawing (Imitation score per drawing—n = 198) 13 No effect (β = 0.13, p = 0.089)* NA Imitation score increases with the number of steps (β = 0.27, p = 0.047)*
Imitate speech (Imitation score per words or sentences—n = 315) 13 No effect (β = 0.014, p = 0.61)* No effect (β = −0.21, p = 0.328)* No effect (β = −0.029, p = 0.72)*
Imitate sounds (Imitation score per sounds—n = 452) 13 Imitation score increases with session (β = 0.037, p = 0.019)* Imitation score decreases when increasing severity (β = −0.31, p = 0.014)* No effect (β = 0.05, p = 0.41)*
Imitate actions (Imitation score per actions—n = 161) 13 Imitation score increases with session (β = 0.11, p = 0.039)* No effect (β = 0.089, p = 0.86)* No effect (β = −0.43, p = 0.18)*
Imitate actions and build (Imitation score per contruction—n = 227) 13 Imitation score increases with session (β = 0.149, p < 0.001)* No effect (β = 0.266, p = 0.47)* Imitation score decreases with the number of cubes (β = −0.1′, p = 0.0176)*
Guess the instrument 13 Bug Bug Bug
Joint attention games
Follow the therapist’s pointing (RT for good answers—n = 681) 13 RT decreases with sessions (β = −0.0045, p = 0.048)** No effect (β = −0.014, p = 0.247)** No effect (β = 0.0057, p = 0.428)**
Cooperative drawing—connect dots (RT—n = 449) 13 RT decreases with sessions (β = −0.024, p = 0.045)** NA No effect (β = 0.0035, p = 0.51)**
Bake a recipe (TCT—n = 748) 14 RT decreases with sessions (β = −0.021, p < 0.001)** NA NA
Receptive communication (RT for good answers—n = 225) 14 No effect (β = −0.002, p = 0.776)** RT is faster in easy versus difficult condition ( = −0.17, p = 0.021)** NA
  1. N number of children exposed to the game during at least 2 sessions (as opposed to n = events that corresponds to the number of tasks with a given score included in the statistical regression), RT reaction time (to perform the task); TCT time to complete the task, NA not appropriate
  2. * Ordinal mixed models; ** Linear mixed models with log transformation