Principled design of game-based auditory learning environments: Examples of ADT for Tinnitus
Principled design of game-based
auditory learning environments:
Examples of ADT for Tinnitus
Nicolas Van Labeke
National Biomedical Research Unit in Hearing
Learning Sciences Research Institute – University of Nottingham
• Aim: Combine auditory perceptual learning,
technology-enhanced learning and game
theories to create auditory learning games
suitable for use outside the lab
– Design games that are intrinsically motivating
– Wide range of age- and disability-related
factors of people with hearing loss favours a
casual game approach
– Principles of auditory learning suggest the use
of intrinsic integration (Habgood 2007)
– training for learning testing of learning
• How do we design effective learning games?
• Learning material
• Motivational factors: challenge, fantasy,
curiosity, control, cooperation, competition,
recognition (Malone & Lepper 1987)
• Core mechanics
– Rules of the game
– Essential interactions required to create gaming
– Explain individual preferences to games
– Define different game genre & flow experience
Challenge People are best motivated when they are working
toward personally meaningful goals whose
Set personally meaningful goals.
Make attainment of goals probable but uncertain.
attainment requires activity at a continuously Give en-route performance feedback.
optimal (intermediate) level of difficulty. Relate goals to learners' self esteem.
Curiosity Something in the physical environment attracts the
learner's attention or there is an optimal level of
Stimulate sensory curiosity by making abrupt changes that
will be perceived by the senses.
discrepancy between present knowledge or skills Stimulate cognitive curiosity by making a person wonder
and what these could be if the learner engaged in about something (i.e., stimulate the learner's interest).
Control People have a basic tendency to want to control
what happens to them.
Make clear the cause-and-effect relationships between what
students are doing and things that happen in real life.
Enable the learners to believe that their work will lead to
Allow learners to freely choose what they want to learn and
how they will learn it.
Fantasy Learners use mental images of things and Make a game out of learning.
situations that are not actually present to stimulate Help learners imagine themselves using the learned
their behaviour. information in real- life settings.
Make the fantasies intrinsic rather than extrinsic.
Competition Learners feel satisfaction by comparing their
performance favourably to that of others.
Competition is more important for some people than for others.
People who lose at competition often suffer more than the
Competition sometimes reduces the urge to be helpful to
Cooperation Learners feel satisfaction by helping others achieve Cooperation
their goals. Cooperation
occurs naturally as well as artificially.
is more important for some people than for others.
Cooperation is a useful real-life skill.
Cooperation requires and develops interpersonal skills.
Recognition Learners feel satisfaction when others recognize
and appreciate their accomplishments.
Recognition requires that the process or product or some other
result of the learning activity be visible.
Recognition differs from competition in that it does not involve
a comparison with the performance of someone else.
Vockell, E. (2004). Educational Psychology: a practical approach. Online Workbook, last retrieved September
Intrinsic Integration (Habgood 2007)
• Motivational effects of challenge, control, etc. are
realized through the core mechanics
• Integrate the learning material with the core
mechanics and NOT the fantasy
“Deliver learning material through the parts of the
game that are the most fun to play, riding on the
back of the flow experience produced by the game,
and not interrupting or diminishing its impact”
“Embody the learning material within the structure
of the gaming world and the player’s interactions
with it, providing an external representation of the
learning content that is explored through the core
mechanics of the gameplay”
Design-based Research (DBR)
• to address theoretical
questions about the
nature of learning in
• to consider approaches
to the study of
learning phenomena in
the real world rather
than the laboratory
• to go beyond narrow
measures of learning
• to derive research
adapted from Y. Mor 2008
A practical case: ADT for Tinnitus
• Collaboration with NBRUH tinnitus group
• Evolutionary framework for testing different motivators
(fantasy, control, challenge) and gameplays
• Evaluating different game-based paradigms
– STARv2 (baseline)
• Active listening, trial-based tasks
– Auditory Submarine
• Interactive listening (sonar analogy)
• system-induced gameplay (steering controlled pace)
– Auditory Treasure Hunter
• Interactive listening (metal detector analogy)
• listener-induced gameplay (listener's selection, activation, and
execution of ADT)
• Impact of visual representation in gameplay and task
– Distractor vs. scaffolding
– Effectiveness of auditory learning games
Auditory Submarine: Intrinsic
s s i dt
Auditory Submarine: Intrinsic
Si • Mapping core mechanics &
• Adaptive model
• Design Decisions
– impact on learning
– impact on gameplay
• Iterative design
• Incremental prototyping
s s i dt
Improving the Gameplay
• Adaptive methods
• Introducing levels and difficulty
– Challenge, competition, recognition
• Side-scrolling game approach?
Auditory Treasure Hunter:
• Still on the drawing board
• Analogy of metal detector for
• Ground filled with different objects of
different values (e.g. golden and silver
nuggets, metal trash, etc.).
• Trade-off between difficult/valuable and
• External constraints (e.g. time limit, charges
in metal detector)
• Levels and decision-making by “treasure
map” exploration & clearing
• Cross-over design
– Comparison of treatments
(training phase 1)
– Comparison of game experience
(training phases 1-3)
• Evaluation based on tinnitus-
related outcomes measures
AND desirability & flow
• Iterative Design process
– Prototype development at
– Usability testing with STARv2
NBRUH/LSRI members (mostly
– Piloting and in-depth testing
with participants to previous Submarine
• Aims: deployment on personal computer desktop, laptop,
– Microsoft competitor to Adobe Flash
– Subset of high-level framework .Net (i.e. shared libraries &
– Browser and off-browser execution modes
– Off-line/online data management
• BUT …
– Audio manipulation supported with basic APIs
– Lack of robust and reusable libraries
• requirements for ADT are ground-breaking!
• Current prototypes based on a proof-of-concept synthesizer!
– Accumulation of layers on top of (generic) audio management
• IT IS A PROTOTYPE-BASED APPROACH!
• TECHNOLOGY IS IMPROVING FAST
• NBRUH Software • NBRUH Tinnitus
Dev. Group Group
– Mike Sharples – Deb Hall
– Stuart Whitehead – Derek Hoare
– Martin Morrison – Victoria Kowalkovski