The STAR Project: Enhancing Adolescents' Social Understanding through Video-Based, Multimedia Scenarios

Richard C. Goldsworthy, Sasha A. Barab, Elizabeth L. Goldsworthy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Adolescents with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and other externalizing disorders are at risk for academic and behavioral problems as a result, in part, of their lack of social competence. One aspect of this population's difficulty in social situations may be attributed to an impaired ability to analyze the social situations of which they are a part, recognize the multiple perspectives or interpretations that individuals may take away from a social situation, and act in a situationally appropriate manner. This study examines a computer game that supports the development of learners' social problem-solving skills. The game package consists of an immersive environment, integrated digital videos of social situations, and embedded questions and instruction. In a controlled, three-group, pre-post experimental design, the prototype performed significantly better than an attention-placebo control and comparably to a therapist-directed group on a transfer measure of problem solving and on one of two engagement measures. No significant differences were found on the Gresham and Elliott Social Skills Rating Scales (SSRS). These results, together with the findings from formative evaluation of the product, led to several recommendations for future work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-26
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Special Education Technology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications


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