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Would You Be Mine: Appropriating
Minecraft as an Assistive Technology for
Youth with Autism
Kathryn E. Ringland, Christine...
Introduction
2
Adoption of assistive technology
3
Research Question
How does an online community for children with autism
adopt and adapt mainstream information and
communi...
Autcraft
5
6
Ethnography
7
Ethnography
8
Ethnography
9
Autcraft
“[the] first Minecraft server dedicated to providing a
safe, fun and learning environment for children on
the aut...
Demographics
11
Ages 6+
Preteens, teens
diagnosed with autism
Allies - friends, advocates
Parents
Analysis
12
Child-Initiated Design
Child
Appropriates & Augments
Their Environment
13
Adult Administrators
Iterate on Designs &
Pushes...
Child-Initiated Design
14
Sensory Rooms
15
Sensory Rooms
I came across a hole in the ground like a small, dark
chamber just big enough for an avatar to stand inside....
Discussion
17
Self Regulation – Sensory Rooms
18
Self Regulation – Sensory Rooms
19
Self Regulation – Sensory Rooms
20
Sensory Rooms
This really helped me today there was a trigger for some
bad memories and it calmed me down wish i could vis...
Sensory Rooms
I think sensory rooms are a fantastic idea. And I added a
book in calm room 1 its about what to do and about...
Text Chat
------
23
Text Chat
------
24
Text Chat
<Khoomei> hey tove
---------
<Khoomei> how are you?
---------
25
Text Chat
A quick message to the other admins and helpers on the
server and now we’re all aware of this and going to
suppo...
Text Chat
Text chat modification
27
Text Chat
This was the BEST idea ever! Chat is so much easier to
see now. I don’t have poor vision … but it STILL so much
...
Conclusion
Flexible, open system allows for adaptation
Expectation to create and appropriate
Child-initiated design
29
Thank You
30
@liltove
kateringland.com
kateringland@gmail.com
A special thanks to my coauthors and
members of LUCI and STA...
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Would You Be Mine: Appropriating Minecraft as an Assistive Technology for Youth with Autism

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Preview: Those with disabilities have long adopted, adapted, and appropriated collaborative systems to serve as assistive devices. In a Minecraft virtual world for children with autism, community members use do-it-yourself (DIY) making activities to transform Minecraft into a variety of assistive technologies. Our results demonstrate how players and administrators “mod” the Minecraft system to support self-regulation and community engagement.

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Would You Be Mine: Appropriating Minecraft as an Assistive Technology for Youth with Autism

  1. 1. Would You Be Mine: Appropriating Minecraft as an Assistive Technology for Youth with Autism Kathryn E. Ringland, Christine T. Wolf, LouAnne E. Boyd, Mark S. Baldwin, & Gillian R. Hayes Department of Informatics University of California, Irvine {kringlan, wolfct, boydl, baldwinm, hayesg}@uci.edu ACCESS PDF of SLIDES: bit.ly/minecraftATassets
  2. 2. Introduction 2 Adoption of assistive technology
  3. 3. 3
  4. 4. Research Question How does an online community for children with autism adopt and adapt mainstream information and communication systems (such as Minecraft) as assistive technology? 4
  5. 5. Autcraft 5
  6. 6. 6
  7. 7. Ethnography 7
  8. 8. Ethnography 8
  9. 9. Ethnography 9
  10. 10. Autcraft “[the] first Minecraft server dedicated to providing a safe, fun and learning environment for children on the autism spectrum and their families” (Autcraft website) 10
  11. 11. Demographics 11 Ages 6+ Preteens, teens diagnosed with autism Allies - friends, advocates Parents
  12. 12. Analysis 12
  13. 13. Child-Initiated Design Child Appropriates & Augments Their Environment 13 Adult Administrators Iterate on Designs & Pushes to Whole Community
  14. 14. Child-Initiated Design 14
  15. 15. Sensory Rooms 15
  16. 16. Sensory Rooms I came across a hole in the ground like a small, dark chamber just big enough for an avatar to stand inside. A member informed me that it was built to give them a “sensory break.” When they went inside and plugged the top of the hole, their screen would go all black. (field notes) 16
  17. 17. Discussion 17
  18. 18. Self Regulation – Sensory Rooms 18
  19. 19. Self Regulation – Sensory Rooms 19
  20. 20. Self Regulation – Sensory Rooms 20
  21. 21. Sensory Rooms This really helped me today there was a trigger for some bad memories and it calmed me down wish i could visit this in real life. (forum) 21
  22. 22. Sensory Rooms I think sensory rooms are a fantastic idea. And I added a book in calm room 1 its about what to do and about calm rooms. (forum) 22
  23. 23. Text Chat ------ 23
  24. 24. Text Chat ------ 24
  25. 25. Text Chat <Khoomei> hey tove --------- <Khoomei> how are you? --------- 25
  26. 26. Text Chat A quick message to the other admins and helpers on the server and now we’re all aware of this and going to support him with his needs even if it means explaining to the other players that in his case, it’s OK to do what he’s doing. This is just one of the many ways that Autcraft is different from all the other servers. (Facebook post) 26
  27. 27. Text Chat Text chat modification 27
  28. 28. Text Chat This was the BEST idea ever! Chat is so much easier to see now. I don’t have poor vision … but it STILL so much easier to see (forum) 28
  29. 29. Conclusion Flexible, open system allows for adaptation Expectation to create and appropriate Child-initiated design 29
  30. 30. Thank You 30 @liltove kateringland.com kateringland@gmail.com A special thanks to my coauthors and members of LUCI and STAR for helping put this presentation together. And to the Autcraft community for their continual openness to my presence. All stock photos in this presentation were made available through Death to the Stock Photo, Unsplash, and Negative Space to be used attribution free.

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