Building social awareness for teens and young adults with autism via gamification

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Citation:
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics), 2016, 9894 LNCS pp. 116 - 127
Issue Date:
2016-01-01
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© Springer International Publishing AG 2016. Teens and young adults are in one of the most challenging phases of their life in terms of discovering new and complex emotions and situations. This is particularly the case for a demographic diagnosed with conditions commonly referred to as Autistic Spectrum Disorders, which is inclusive of Asperger’s Syndrome. Through a video game medium, it is possible to place the players in virtual situations that explore these the intricacies of social interaction and relationships. This could be powerful for communicating such concepts: players can be explained to, practice and given feedback in a comfortable, non-threatening, and perhaps even familiar environment. Our objective is to build such a game by modifying an already popular video game. Through modification, a game’s already existing mechanisms and resources may be repurposed for serious functions. In the case of our team, this is to allow the player to have conversations that dynamically change depending on their input. Characters in the game can be manipulated to communicate verbally and non-verbally, delivering emotive lines recorded by voice actors whilst projecting certain facial expressions and body language. We created a tangible video game learning resource that can be trialed to investigate its value to build social awareness.
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