Conference Paper

Design Rationales of a Mobile Game-Based Intervention for German Dyslexic Children

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Abstract

Educational games have been shown to provide support for children with learning disabilities to overcome their challenges. Gaming and feedback elements can benefit the learning process while keeping children engaged and help them to regain motivation for learning. We present the design of a mobile serious game for German dyslexic primary school children that incorporates gaming elements such as narrative, pedagogical agents, tutorials, feedback, and reward mechanisms. We derive our game design decisions and specify the rationales behind with special focus on the needs and demands of the target group. We evaluate the gaming elements based on the results of 63 children who played the game at home during a period of 9-10 weeks. Results indicate overall positive perception of the game elements. Children were immersed in the fantasy-themed world, liked the pedagogical agents, and indicated that the interactive tutorials gave an easy start into the game, and emphasized the special importance of praise.

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... Questionnaire [25], [26], [31], [33], [34], [35], [36], [ Usability testing and questionnaires were the most popular design evaluation methods among the reviewed studies. No specific reasons were explained by the studies for choosing usability testing. ...
... Similarly, as for the questionnaire, no specific reason was given for choosing it over other alternative evaluation methods. Nevertheless, some studies did specify the purpose of using questionnaires were for testing the usability [25,26,33,34,35,37], game elements [31], and the effect of the gamified course on user motivation [36]. Furthermore, SUS (System Usability Scale) was widely used among the studies [22,26,33,34,35,37]. ...
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... Orthographic awareness provides the underpinnings for spellings and sounding words. Mobile game-based interventions allow the development of phonics, which in turn have a positive effect on orthographic skills (Holz, Beuttler & Ninaus, 2018). Innovative technology is used in game-based learning to enhance orthography skills. ...
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... All the apps were tested once the respective search was carried out; as is common with most children, the most effective way to help dyslexic children is through games [45]. Particularly useful are the games [46] where the user is required to complete the words using the vowels or consonants that cause difficulties. In order to develop the web and mobile apps proposed in the current work, the following apps were used as the principal examples: ...
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Dyslexia is a relatively common language disorder which is generally ignored in rural communities. It hinders children’s learning processes and, in some cases, is the cause of dropouts or violence in schools. The present work strives to create a web and mobile app as a preliminary step towards the diagnosis and treatment of dyslexic children. Apps providing didactic educational games and activities improve literacy skills for students with reading disabilities. The current work incorporates user experience and prototyping to fulfill app requirements. The authors evaluated the apps with the Mobile App Rating Scale (MARS) tool to assess engagement, functionality, aesthetics, and information. The app’s improvements were immediately implemented and tested in the “Escuela Linea Equinoccial” (Ecuador) school, proving its utility for future use in the education system. The app can be a valuable tool for children with dyslexia to progress successfully through school, raising their self-confidence and, thereby, helping them reach their full potential as adults able to make a positive contribution to society.
... For example, robots have been used to aid learning and communication for those with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) (Lee, Kwon, Kim, & Shin, 2015), Down syndrome (Aslanoglou, Papazoglou, & Karagiannidis, 2018), and severe learning disabilities (Vogt, Dunk, & Poos, 2017). Additionally, educational games and applications have supported the development of social and life skills in learners with dyslexia (Holz, Beuttler, & Ninaus, 2018), ASD (Demmans Epp, & Makos, 2013;Gelsomini, 2018), and cognitive disabilities (Cano, Palta, Posso, & Peñeñory, 2017). ...
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... A partir de estudo prévio sobre aplicativos voltados a crianças disléxicas [25][26][27][28] foi elaborada uma interface gráfica possuindo elementos, tais como: cores suaves por meio de tons em azul, fonte textual voltada para crianças com dislexia e dimensões adequadas para botões e campos textuais na tela. Crianças disléxicas apresentam um melhor desempenho quando submetidas a filtros azuis e contrastes mais suaves 29 . ...
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Junior, D. S., Cidrim, L., Roazzi, A., Madeiro, F. (2019). Versão digital do teste de nomeação automática rápida (RAN): Uma contribuição para detectar precocemente problemas de leitura em crianças. Revista CEFAC, 21(1), 1-9 e2518 doi:10.1590/1982-0216/20192112518 https://bit.ly/2GhuaeH /// RESUMO Objetivo: apresentar uma versão digital do teste de Nomeação Automática Rápida (RAN), construído para ser uma ferramenta auxiliar para detectar precocemente problemas de leitura em crianças. Métodos: o aplicativo foi elaborado visando fornecer recursos, como: a) cadastro de indivíduos; b) segurança da informação com o uso do sistema de autenticação online – cada indivíduo é visualizado apenas por quem o cadastrou e c) histórico de resultados. Para conhecer as impressões de fonoaudiólogos e profissionais da área da educação sobre esta versão digital do teste de RAN, foi realizada uma pesquisa de opinião pública com participantes não identificados por meio do Google Forms. Resultados: o aplicativo conta com reconhecimento automático de fala e permite registro e acesso ao histórico da aplicação, incluindo avaliação estatística de resultados. O aplicativo apresenta uma interface responsiva que se adapta às dimensões do aparelho móvel, com cores suaves, e oferece opções variadas de fontes de texto. As imagens dos objetos desta versão digital foram elaboradas por uma designer, sendo imagens comuns ao universo infantil. Conclusão: o aplicativo apresenta-se como uma ferramenta digital útil, que auxilia profissionais da área da educação infantil a avaliar precocemente crianças com dificuldades na leitura com destaque aos seguintes elementos: imagens exclusivas e adequadas ao universo infantil e a função de armazenamento de resultados dos usuários testados. Descritores: Leitura; Aprendizagem; Tecnologia
... In this article, we evaluate the general validity and player experience of Prosodiya. A detailed evaluation of individual game elements is reported in [14]. ...
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Approximately 4-10% of the German population suffer from developmental dyslexia, influencing children's educational, personal, and social development negatively. Digital interventions have shown great promise to additionally support dyslexic children outside of school or learning therapy. We present the results of a mobile serious game for German dyslexic children to improve reading and spelling performance with special emphasis on syllable stress awareness. We evaluate player experience and investigate the relationship between real-life literacy skills and in-game data of 63 children who played the game at home for 9-10 weeks within the scope of a randomized controlled field trial. Results indicate positive player experience and a completion rate of 75% indicates the feasibility of unsupervised digital game-based interventions. Moreover, real-life reading and spelling proficiencies correlated significantly with processing times and scores measured in-game, providing first evidence of the game's validity.
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this paper defines a framework for understanding the various roles children can have in the design process, and how these roles can impact technologies that are created. Categories and Subject Descriptors: H.1.2 [Models and Principles]: User/Machine Systems---human factors; H.5.2 [Information Interfaces and Presentation]: User Interfaces---evaluation/methodology; interaction styles General Terms: Human Factors, Design, Theory Additional Key Words and Phrases: Children, design techniques, participatory design, evaluation, educational applications 1 CHILDREN AND TECHNOLOGY Computers for kids need to be fun like a friend, but can make me smart for school. They should also be friendly like my cat. The real thing is that they shouldn't make me have to type since I don't like that. I can talk much better! (Researcher Notes, April 3, 1999, Quote from an 8 year-old child). Children have their own likes, dislikes, curiosities, and nee
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This book talks about why, and how, to design 'serious games'.
Conference Paper
Approximately 4–10% of the German population suffers from developmental dyslexia. The learning disorder afffects educational, personal, and social development of children in a negative way. Mobile serious games have the potential to support dyslexic primary-school children in addition to school support and learning therapy. We propose such a mobile serious game called “Prosodiya”, with the help of which dyslexic children can improve their reading and writing performance. Prosodiya includes innovative and evidence-based interventions that focus on improving the awareness of linguistic features related to syllable stress. We report the results of a pilot study of a preliminary version of the game. Results indicate that the children enjoyed playing the game, that their motivation was maintained, and that they wanted more levels.
Conference Paper
Considering the difficulties many students and even educated adults face with reasoning about fractions, the potential for serious games to augment traditional instructional approaches on this topic is strong. The present study aims at providing evidence for the validity of a serious game used for studying students’ conceptual knowledge of fractions. A total of 54 Finnish fifth graders played the math game on tablet computers using tilt-control to maneuver an avatar along a number line for a total of 30 min. Results indicated that most of the hallmark effects of fraction magnitude processing as identified in basic research on numerical cognition were successfully replicated using our serious game. This clearly suggests that game-based approaches for fraction education (even using tilt-control) are possible and may be effective tools for assessing and possibly promoting students’ conceptual knowledge of fractions.
Article
In this article we argue that to study or apply games as learning environments, multiple perspectives have to be taken into account. We first define game-based learning and gamification, and then discuss theoretical models that describe learning with games, arguing that playfulness is orthogonal to learning theory. We then review design elements of games that facilitate learning by fostering learners' cognitive, behavioral, affective, and sociocultural engagement with the subject matter. Finally, we discuss the basis of these design elements in cognitive, motivational, affective, and sociocultural foundations by reviewing key theories from education and psychology that are the most pertinent to game-based learning and by describing empirical research on learning with games that has been or should be conducted. We conclude that a combination of cognitive, motivational, affective, and sociocultural perspectives is necessary for both game design and game research to fully capture what games have to offer for learning.
Article
This meta-analysis summarizes research on the effects of a comprehensive, interactive web-based software AbrACAdAbrA (A balanced reading Approach for Canadians designed to Achieve best results for All) on the development of reading competencies among kindergarteners and elementary students. Findings from nine randomized control trials and quasi-experimental studies undertaken in a variety of contexts across Canada, Australia and Kenya were reviewed and analyzed. Comparing the experimental groups that used AbrACAdAbrA to the control groups exposed to regular literacy instruction, the studies produced sixty-five independent effect sizes in six outcome categories, as defined by the national reading Panel (nrP, 2000). The average Fixed Effect model effect sizes were: • Phonics: g+ = 0.189, (k = 19, N = 1238), p < 01; • Phonemic Awareness: g+ = 0.324, (k = 20, N = 1753), p < .001; • reading Fluency: g+ = 0.056, (k = 6, N = 1725), p > .05 (ns); • reading Comprehension: g+ = 0.065, (k = 6, N = 1045), p > .05 (ns); • listening Comprehension: g+ = 0.381, (k = 6, N = 968), p < .001; • vocabulary Knowledge: g+ = 0.138, (k = 15, N = 1167), p < .05. The non-independent weighted overall average effects were g+ = 0.179 and g+ = 0.170 for the random Effects and Fixed Effect models, respectively (k = 73, p < .01). All but two of the average effect size distributions were homogeneous, sug- gesting that the observed effects are generally representative of the impact that AbrACAdAbrA may have on novice readers. The paper concludes with a discussion of AbrACAdAbrA classroom uses including implementation fidelity and offers the implications of the findings for future research and development.
Article
Continuing interest in digital games indicated that it would be useful to update Connolly et al.'s (2012) systematic literature review of empirical evidence about the positive impacts and outcomes of games. Since a large number of papers was identified in the period from 2009 to 2014, the current review focused on 143 papers that provided higher quality evidence about the positive outcomes of games. Connolly et al.'s multidimensional analysis of games and their outcomes provided a useful framework for organising the varied research in this area. The most frequently occurring outcome reported for games for learning was knowledge acquisition, while entertainment games addressed a broader range of affective, behaviour change, perceptual and cognitive and physiological outcomes. Games for learning were found across varied topics with STEM subjects and health the most popular. Future research on digital games would benefit from a systematic programme of experimental work, examining in detail which game features are most effective in promoting engagement and supporting learning.
Article
Zusammenfassung: Diese Studie geht der Frage nach, in welchem Zusammenhang sprachrhythmische Fahigkeiten mit der Rechtschreib- und der Leseleistung stehen. Vierzig Dritt- und Viertklassler absolvierten eine sprachrhythmische Aufgabe, bei der ein Satz ausgewahlt werden sollte, dessen Betonungsmuster zu einem vorgegebenen Rhythmus passte. Die Leistungen in dieser Aufgabe korrelierten mit Lese- sowie mit Rechtschreibleistungen und insbesondere mit dem Erwerb der Vokallangenmarker. Eine Teilgruppe von 24 Kindern nahm an einer zweiten Aufgabe teil, bei welcher kurze Satze explizit rhythmisch gesprochen und die dabei entstehenden Rhythmen synchron auf einem Graphiktablett geklopft wurden. Die Leistungen in dieser Aufgabe korrelierten mit Rechtschreib- jedoch nicht mit Leseleistungen. Diese Ergebnisse werden diskutiert im Hinblick auf die verschiedenen sprachrhythmischen Fahigkeiten, die in Rhythmusubungen zur Geltung kommen konnen und die offenbar von unterschiedlicher Relevanz fur die Entwicklung der beiden sc...
Chapter
Neuroscience as well as computer gaming have rapidly advanced in the last decades. Yet, the combination of both fields is still in its infancy. One example of an emerging alliance is neurofeedback, where participants are required to learn controlling their own brain activity. So far, this kind of training is mostly applied in therapeutic settings, for example improving symptoms in epilepsy, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or autism spectrum disorder. However, there are some promising approaches that used neurofeedback in everyday situations for healthy subjects. This may prove especially valuable for serious games that aim to improve learning capabilities and cognitive aspects of individual users. The following chapter introduces the basic concepts and standards of neurofeedback. The different non-invasive imaging techniques are introduced along with successful applications in neurofeedback. Finally, benefits and pitfalls for future combinations of neurofeedback and games are discussed: while the former may profit from realistic and motivating video scenarios, the latter is expected to be a tool for evaluating and monitoring the direct effects on the user’s brain.
Article
The role of segmental phonology in developmental dyslexia (DD) is well established (e.g., deficit in phonological awareness), but the role of suprasegmental phonology (prosody) has been less widely investigated. Stress is one of the main prosodic features and refers to the relative prominence of syllables (strong/weak) within a word. The aim of the present study is to examine stress awareness in children with dyslexia and the possible mediation of phonemic awareness on suprasegmental phonological skills. Thirty-one Spanish children with DD and 31 chronological age-control children participated. Two stress awareness tasks were administrated, one with words and another with pseudowords. Results show that the children with dyslexia performed more poorly on both tasks than control children. The pattern of results in accuracy and reaction time suggest that, while children without difficulties use different strategies depending on the type of item, the children with dyslexia employ the same strategy to resolve the two tasks without any benefit of lexical knowledge about stress. Even so, this strategy did not work so efficiently as it did in the control group, which led the group with dyslexia to make a greater number of mistakes. It was also found that, when phonemic awareness was entered as a covariate, accuracy differences disappeared, but only in the word stress task. However, when lexical knowledge was not necessary (as in the pseudoword stress task) differences still remained statistically significant. Implications on the importance of suprasegmental processing in reading acquisition disabilities are discussed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Article
In this paper, we describe an in situ study that examined the diverse design features and effects of three pre-algebra games for middle school children who have either challenges with learning or different language backgrounds. Data were collected through in-field observation, artifact analysis, school performance report and knowledge test during 15 one-hour gaming sessions over a period of 3 weeks. A list of key design features related to creating engagement and learning for students with special learning needs emerged from the data. The findings and discussions will inform educational designers and practitioners on successful educational game design and implementation for learners with diverse characteristics and needs. What is already known about this topic What this paper adds Implications for practice and/or policy
Article
We examine design factors that may evoke positive emotions in learners and investigate the effects of these positive emotions on learning. Recent research showed that the emotional design of multimedia learning material can induce positive emotions in learners that in turn facilitate comprehension and transfer. We sought to replicate these results with a different population and different mood induction procedure and examine individual emotions, and to decompose the effects of the design elements of color and shape. Study 1 showed that well-designed materials induced positive emotions and facilitated comprehension, though transfer performance was not affected by emotional design. Study 2 found that round face-like shapes both alone and in conjunction with warm color induced positive emotions. Warm colors alone, however, did not affect learners' emotions. Comprehension was facilitated by warm colors and round face-like shapes, independently as well as together. Transfer was facilitated by round face-like shapes when used with neutral colors.
Article
In an orally presented vowel length categorization task with both word and nonword stimuli, a group of 10-year-old German-speaking poor spellers performed less accurately and consistently slower than a group of normal spellers of the same age. The poor spellers' level of performance was comparable to that of a group of 8-year-old inexperienced spellers. In an experimental design, the influence of the phonological characteristics of the preceding and succeeding consonant on children's decisions about vowel length was examined. The type of onset had hardly any effect whereas the offset consonant had a marked influence. It is concluded that vowel length categorization is associated with the ability to mark vowel length in spelling. Vowel length predicts but is not sufficient to explain difficulties in orthographically correct spelling of vowel length.
Article
Structural features of learning tasks are relevant for problem solving but not salient for novice learners. Feedback in the form of Knowledge of Correct Response (KCR) during practice is expected to help learners recognize the structural features and to profit from learner control over the selection of learning tasks. A 2 × 2 factorial experiment (N = 118) was conducted to study the effects of the KCR feedback (present and absent) and control over the selection of learning tasks (learner control and program control). The presence of the KCR feedback yielded higher efficiency on a near-transfer test as well as higher learner motivation. An interaction between feedback and control, indicating extra beneficial effects of feedback when learners control the selection of learning tasks, was not found. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.
Article
This is a non-expert overview of Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITSs), a way in which Artificial Intelligence (AI) techniques are being applied to education. It introduces ITSs and the motivation for them. It looks at its history: its evolution from Computer-Assisted Instruction (CAI). After looking at the structure of a typical ITS, the paper further examines and discusses some other architectures. Several classic ITSs are reviewed, mainly due to their historical significance or because they best demonstrate some of the principles of intelligent tutoring. A reasonably representative list of ITSs is also provided in order to provide a better appreciation of this vibrant field as well as reveal the scope of existing tutors. The paper concludes, perhaps more appropriately, with some of the author's viewpoints on a couple of controversial issues in the intelligent tutoring domain.
Article
Computer and videogames often require that users interact with other characters on the screen that represent other real people or characters that are controlled by computer code running within the game. The difference between game play with other avatars (player-controlled characters) or agents (characters controlled by the computer) may influence the engagement a game player experiences. This study investigated the effects of agency (avatar versus agent) and the type of gaming activity (competition versus cooperation) on physiological arousal and subjective evaluation of play. A 2 (avatar, agent)×2 (competition, cooperation) within-subject experiment was conducted (N=32). Players exhibited greater physiological arousal to otherwise identical interactions when other characters were introduced as an avatar rather than an agent. Furthermore, the co-player's source of agency interacted with the type of gaming activity. The results have implications for understanding how different forms of representation in virtual worlds and games will affect psychological responses in the contexts of entertainment, learning and the conduct of serious work.
Mapping learning and game mechanics for serious games analysis
  • Sylvester Arnab
  • Theodore Lim
  • Maira B Carvalho
  • Francesco Bellotti
  • Sandy Sara De Freitas
  • Neil Louchart
  • Riccardo Suttie
  • Alessandro De Berta
  • Gloria
Sylvester Arnab, Theodore Lim, Maira B. Carvalho, Francesco Bellotti, Sara de Freitas, Sandy Louchart, Neil Suttie, Riccardo Berta, and Alessandro De Gloria. 2015. Mapping learning and game mechanics for serious games analysis. British Journal of Educational Technology 46, 2 (mar 2015), 391-411. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12113
Behandlung der Lese-Rechtschreibschwäche nach der Grundschulzeit: Anwendung und Ü berprü fung eines Konzeptes
  • Reuter-Liehr Carola
Carola Reuter-Liehr. 1993. Behandlung der Lese-Rechtschreibschwäche nach der Grundschulzeit: Anwendung und Überprüfung eines Konzeptes. Zeitschrift für Kinder-und Jugendpsychiatrie 21, 3 (1993), 135-147.
Einfü hrung in die Phonetik, Phonologie und Graphematik des Deutschen
  • Sven Staffeldt
Sven Staffeldt. 2010. Einführung in die Phonetik, Phonologie und Graphematik des Deutschen. Ein Leitfaden für den akademischen Unterricht. Stauffenburg, Tübingen.
Sind Rechtschreibschwierigkeiten Ausdruck einer phonologischen Stö rung? Zeitschrift fü r Entwicklungspsychologie und Pä dagogische Psychologie
  • Christian Klicpera
  • Barbara Gasteiger Klicpera