The Autism Discovery Tool: Sensory from Within is a mobile app that aims to improve sensory environments for people on the autism spectrum by empowering people in home, school, and community settings to better understand and communicate about the autism spectrum. Making use of the feature-rich iPad, this exploratory, play-based app immerses users into sensory experiences that raise awareness of how others may interpret their environment differently.
The app is broken down into the seven senses, which include vision, hearing, touch, taste, smell, balance, and body position. Each sense uses common scenarios, such as sitting in a classroom, playing mini-putt, making a smoothie, or playing in a park, to demonstrate some of the sensory diversity found on the spectrum, including both strengths and challenges. Additionally, hidden tools can be discovered in each of the scenarios, providing useful sensory strategies that can be applied in the real world.
With its open-ended, low-barrier learning environment, this app enables a wide range of ages, abilities, and communication styles to better understand the spectrum and gain the tools, strategies, and understanding that are necessary in the development of better environments for those on the autism spectrum.