Designing Effective Health Games:  What We Can Learn from Theory and Research? Cynthia Bates, M.C.I.S. University of Calif...
Theory is not a dirty word <ul><li>Theory is integral to research </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Creating hypotheses </li></ul></ul...
Gaming Background <ul><li>Education theories have informed the use of commercial video games </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Situate...
Theories of Communication and Health Promotion <ul><li>Social cognitive theory and self-efficacy: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Fa...
Newer Territory: Social Science Theories <ul><li>Social Norms Theory  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reinforcing safe norms; sexual...
Examples of Games Using HBM Concepts <ul><li>How can a game remove barriers to behaviors? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Virtual re...
Questions to Address in Future Research <ul><li>How can we optimize skill transfer from a health game to daily life? </li>...
<ul><li>“ There’s nothing as practical as a good theory”  </li></ul><ul><li>-Kurt Lewin </li></ul>
<ul><li>Thank you! </li></ul><ul><li>Cynthia Bates </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>
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  • Final Health Games Presentation

    1. 1. Designing Effective Health Games: What We Can Learn from Theory and Research? Cynthia Bates, M.C.I.S. University of California, Santa Barbara Games for Health Conference, Baltimore, 2008
    2. 2. Theory is not a dirty word <ul><li>Theory is integral to research </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Creating hypotheses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Statistical testing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It helps us explain and predict effects </li></ul><ul><li>It improves the design of media, including health games </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Goal setting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advancement of future games </li></ul></ul>
    3. 3. Gaming Background <ul><li>Education theories have informed the use of commercial video games </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Situated learning via first-person simulations in Oregon Trail </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Constructivist learning in Sim City </li></ul></ul><ul><li>But what about the construction of video games for health? </li></ul>
    4. 4. Theories of Communication and Health Promotion <ul><li>Social cognitive theory and self-efficacy: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Factual knowledge is not enough </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Feeling capable of changing a health behavior is key </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Social support theories </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social interaction increases social support and improves health </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Health games can be designed to increase social support </li></ul></ul>
    5. 5. Newer Territory: Social Science Theories <ul><li>Social Norms Theory </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reinforcing safe norms; sexual health, alcohol and drug issues </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Social Exchange Theory </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Designers can make it easy or “cheap” to connect to others; social networking </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Health Belief Model </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Research to find out who the target audience is; what they think the benefits and barriers to behavior are for them </li></ul></ul>
    6. 6. Examples of Games Using HBM Concepts <ul><li>How can a game remove barriers to behaviors? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Virtual reality for phobias </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How can a game reinforce the benefits of a health behavior? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rex Ronan </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How can a game increase awareness of internal and external cues? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>ADHD biofeedback </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. Questions to Address in Future Research <ul><li>How can we optimize skill transfer from a health game to daily life? </li></ul><ul><li>How can we design games to be a credible source of social norms? </li></ul><ul><li>How can specific player interactions boost the impact of health games? </li></ul><ul><li>When should health games be played alone, in pairs, or in groups? In person or online? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the advantages and disadvantages of playing the role of another character versus playing as one’s own avatar? </li></ul>
    8. 8. <ul><li>“ There’s nothing as practical as a good theory” </li></ul><ul><li>-Kurt Lewin </li></ul>
    9. 9. <ul><li>Thank you! </li></ul><ul><li>Cynthia Bates </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>

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