Senior Design is a capstone learning experience for Stevens undergraduates. Working together over the course of an academic year, teams tackle a practical problem initiated by a faculty member or quite often an external sponsor. This symbiotic relationship equips students with professional skills and experience while allowing sponsors to explore areas or concepts they perhaps are unable or unwilling to direct resources to at the time and in return provide real-world challenges to the students. Sponsors typically include alumni, faculty collaborators, and companies that frequently hire Stevens graduates, providing an opportunity for those organizations to cultivate relationships on campus and discover new talent.
The therapeutic toys geared towards autistic children that are currently on the market are overly expensive, fragile, and many are not age appropriate. These issues affect the teachers, parents, and even the autistic children for these are customer needs and requirements that have yet to be addressed by the toy market. The highly priced toys coupled with the fact that the children are prone to misuse toys including biting, throwing, and kicking them make it difficult for facilities to maintain a healthy supply of functioning toys that satisfy the educational and entertainment needs of the children. The age appropriateness of toys that teach basic principles and lessons seem to be limited in the industry as well. Older individuals with special needs are forced to play with toys made or intended for toddlers. These individuals are less likely to consistently use these toys, thus defeating the purpose of repetition to reinforce the skills obtained from using the toy.
Need: Lack of Age Appropriate Toys for Children with Autism
Purpose: Offer the Individual an Engaging Device that Provides a Therapeutic and Educational Experience
Mission Statement: Develop a Modular Toy for Individuals with Low Functioning Fine Motor Skills