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Introduction: Game-based learning and accessibility <ul><li>Game-based learning is gaining acceptance (Educational videoga...
Introduction: approaching accessibility in game-based learning <ul><li>Awareness about accessibility in games is still sca...
Accessibility in Videogames: design issues <ul><li>Choose the game genre carefully </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Promote reflexion...
Accessibility in Videogames: design issues II <ul><li>Design the game without binding actions to specific interaction mech...
What is <e-Adventure>? <ul><li>Authoring tool  for  point-and-click   adventure games </li></ul><ul><li>Low-cost </li></ul...
Introducing accessibility in <e-Adventure>: General scope <ul><li>Adaptation at three levels </li></ul>3 2 1 Cognitive lim...
<e-Adventure> Game Engine Architecture 1) Adaptation of user-game interaction (students with severe impairments or hard en...
<e-Adventure> Input/Output modules <ul><li>Input/Output modules summary </li></ul><ul><li>Mouse Interface </li></ul><ul><u...
<e-Adventure> Input/Output modules <ul><li>Voice Interface </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Receive the commands via voice </li></ul>...
<e-Adventure> Input/Output modules <ul><li>Natural Language Interface </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Works like the Voice Interface...
In-game tools in <e-Adventure> <ul><li>In-game settings configuration tools </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Configuration of speed p...
The Game Adaptation Engine <ul><ul><li>Feature already integrated in the <e-Adventure> platform </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li...
The Game Adaptation Engine
Gathering information about user and environment <ul><ul><li>If the game is played  online : </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><l...
Summary & Future Work <ul><li>Summary </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Although game-based learning is on the rise, if educational ga...
Thank you! <ul><li>Any Question? </li></ul><ul><li>Baltasar Fernández-Manjón </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><...
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Balta Mtdl09

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Balta Mtdl09

  1. 2. Introduction: Game-based learning and accessibility <ul><li>Game-based learning is gaining acceptance (Educational videogames seem to have potential) </li></ul><ul><li>However, it is difficult to integrate videogames in the classroom due to several factors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g. instructors ignore what is going on in the game </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Effective approach: integrate the games in Learning Management Systems </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Accessibility is also an important issue in this concern that has not been properly addressed yet </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Education is a universal right </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>11% children from 6-14 years old have some level of impairment (US Census Bureau 2007) </li></ul></ul>
  2. 3. Introduction: approaching accessibility in game-based learning <ul><li>Awareness about accessibility in games is still scarce </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Related to the problem of the high development cost </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Involves complex technical support (text-to-speech synthesis, voice recognition, etc.) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Constraint which is especially relevant in education where budget is limited </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Authoring tools can be the appropriate vehicle for introducing accessibility in educational videogames </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In-built accessibility-oriented services (e.g. a configurable text-to-speech module) will reduce the cost dramatically </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Force the game designer to start thinking about accessibility from the design stage ( increase of awareness ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Facilitates the introduction of accessibility in existing games ( promotes reuse and maintenance ) </li></ul></ul>Objective for this work: Introduce accessibility in the <e-Adventure> game authoring tool However, the support for accessibility in current game authoring tools is almost inexistent
  3. 4. Accessibility in Videogames: design issues <ul><li>Choose the game genre carefully </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Promote reflexion instead of action </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Genres where visual effects are not crucial </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>E.g.: point-and-click adventure games </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Common adaptations carried out in games </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Adjustment of contrast and color settings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Audible sonars to detect enemies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide relevant information through multiple channels </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Support for adapted game-pads </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul></ul>
  4. 5. Accessibility in Videogames: design issues II <ul><li>Design the game without binding actions to specific interaction mechanisms </li></ul><ul><li>Adapting the game requires information about the user (e.g. visual, mobility and hearing requirements) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Multiple alternatives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In e-learning courses it makes sense that the LMS stores information about the impairments of the student and delivers them to the game when this is launched </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider not only information about the user but also about the environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>E.g.: In a noisy environment anybody could be completely deaf </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 6. What is <e-Adventure>? <ul><li>Authoring tool for point-and-click adventure games </li></ul><ul><li>Low-cost </li></ul><ul><li>Instructor-oriented </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Instructors are involved directly in the development process </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Education-specific features </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Performance tracking & assessment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In-game adaptation behavior </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Integration with LMSs </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Several applications in diverse fields. E.g. medical field (Moreno-Ger et al. 2008, Torrente et al. 2009) </li></ul>
  6. 7. Introducing accessibility in <e-Adventure>: General scope <ul><li>Adaptation at three levels </li></ul>3 2 1 Cognitive limitations Moderated physical limitations (e.g. low vision, reduced mobility in hands) Severe physical limitations (e.g. blindness or deafness) Needs of the user / Environment constraints Adaptation of the game semantics using the adaptation engine In-game tools and special guidance (screen magnifyier, speed parameters configuration, in-game help, etc.) Adaptation of the user-game interaction (input/output channels) Needs of the user / Environment constraints
  7. 8. <e-Adventure> Game Engine Architecture 1) Adaptation of user-game interaction (students with severe impairments or hard environment constraints) 2) In-game tools (students with low impairments or moderate environment constraints) 3) Adaptation of the game flow (game semantics) (students with cognitive impairments)
  8. 9. <e-Adventure> Input/Output modules <ul><li>Input/Output modules summary </li></ul><ul><li>Mouse Interface </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The interaction mechanism by default </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Point-and-click: demands the ability of seeing objects and characters on the scene (sense of view) and move the mouse </li></ul></ul>Mouse pointer
  9. 10. <e-Adventure> Input/Output modules <ul><li>Voice Interface </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Receive the commands via voice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The system analyzes the syntactic structure of the command introduced </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The system matches the syntactic structure (once analyzed) to the possible interactions available to the user at that moment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Example of commands recognized </li></ul></ul>
  10. 11. <e-Adventure> Input/Output modules <ul><li>Natural Language Interface </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Works like the Voice Interface but receiving the commands through the keyboard </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The system analyzes the syntactic structure of the sentence introduced </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The system matches the syntactic structure (once analyzed) to the possible interactions available to the user at that moment </li></ul></ul>
  11. 12. In-game tools in <e-Adventure> <ul><li>In-game settings configuration tools </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Configuration of speed parameters, reaction time, movement of the players, double-click time gap, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Color filters that modify the color layout according to preferences of the student </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many common problems can be solved with these small variations </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Other tools embedded in the game atmosphere </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Screen magnifier: Introduced directly in the student’s inventory </li></ul></ul>
  12. 13. The Game Adaptation Engine <ul><ul><li>Feature already integrated in the <e-Adventure> platform </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Based on a set of rules following the pattern </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Condition->Effect </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When the condition is met (defined over external or internal variables) the effect is triggered, which modifies the game behavior </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>With this mechanism we can, for instance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid a complex task for a student with cognitive impairments </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Provide alternative paths of diverse difficulty </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Change the initial scene </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  13. 14. The Game Adaptation Engine
  14. 15. Gathering information about user and environment <ul><ul><li>If the game is played online : </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>(a) The student profile and environment settings are distributed by the LMS (e.g.) at runtime (transparently to the user) => Online execution of the game </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If the game is played offline </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>(b) The student introduces the information before the game starts </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>(c) The instructor uses the game editor to package the information along with the game </li></ul></ul></ul>
  15. 16. Summary & Future Work <ul><li>Summary </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Although game-based learning is on the rise, if educational games are to be used in real courses accessibility must be addressed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The first barrier to overcome in the development of accessible educational games is the extra development cost it implies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>An effective approach to reduce the cost is to produce authoring tools with in-built accessibility features </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Contribution </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Introduction of accessibility in the <e-Adventure> educational game authoring tool </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Future work </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Polish the technology and release it to the public for testing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Connection with Learning Management Systems needs futher development (limitations of current LMS) </li></ul></ul>
  16. 17. Thank you! <ul><li>Any Question? </li></ul><ul><li>Baltasar Fernández-Manjón </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.e-ucm.es/people/balta </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t forget to try out the <e-Adventure> platform! </li></ul><ul><li>http://e-adventure.e-ucm.es </li></ul>

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