Study Finds FaceSay Improves Emotion

Researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham have released a research study that found that children with Asperger Syndrome and autism who used the FaceSay interactive program increased their ability to read facial expressions and emotions.

Read the UAB press release here.

Visit the FaceSay web site here.

3 Comments so far

  1. cwimsatt on March 6th, 2008

    One of the surprising findings from the FaceSay study was generalization of social skills to both classroom and home (google for “slideshare facesay” to see a presenation given to UA colleagues – see Results 3 and 4, parent self reports and blinded grad student observations in the classroom).

    It’s one of the few studies where generalization was shown. Studies so far on “Let’s Face It”, “Mind Reading”, “Teach Town”, “Transporters” and others end with a last bullet in the conclusion, something to the effect of “Generalization to real life?” or “Further studies are needed” or “Generalization was not shown”. So a second FaceSay study is in the works to attempt to replicate and refine/better quantify the results. The researchers tell me it will be a big deal if the results are positive.

    Thanks for mentioning FaceSay.

    Kind Regards,


  2. cwimsatt on March 6th, 2008

    Some folks from recently interviewed the UAB researchers, as well as one of the 11 yo students with Aspergers who participated in the study.

    Medstar: “What did you learn from playing FaceSay”?

    Student: “I learned I need to look at both halves of the face. I’ve been looking at the bottom half, at the mouth.”

    This awareness is one of the things I was shooting for w/ the FaceSay games, in part inspired by reading an interview with Bram Cohen, the author of Bit Torrent (google for “wrong planet bram cohen”) about a similar “aha” moment he had later in life.


  3. cwimsatt on April 8th, 2011

    The paper on the FaceSay Randomized Controlled study above was published in Feb 2011

    Both the HFA and LFA FaceSay participants improved relative to controls on in-vitro emotion recognition and in-vivo playground social interaction measures.

    The HFA FaceSay participants also improved relative to controls on a Facial Recognition measure. The LFA FaceSay participants also improved relative to control on a parent self report.


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