Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Music game for autistic children unveiled

Date:
May 26, 2011
Source:
University of Abertay Dundee
Summary:
A musical computer game to help children with autism learn and relax has been unveiled by graduate students in the UK.

Image from game.
Credit: University of Abertay Dundee

A musical computer game to help children with autism learn and relax has been unveiled to the public at the Abertay Digital Graduate Show.

John Steven, a Creative Sound Production student at the University of Abertay Dundee, built a game designed to help autistic children learn about colour and shape recognition while also helping to keep them calm and focused.

The game works in a similar way to popular musical titles like Guitar Hero: different coloured shapes appear on screen, prompting the child to press a matching key.

Each of the different shapes plays a different chord, and when the right buttons are pressed a flower grows on the screen. The calming music and the positive reinforcement of showing success on screen is designed to be enjoyable and help autistic children develop independent learning skills.

John said: "I really wanted to use the creative skills I learnt at Abertay University to help children with learning difficulties, and giving them the opportunity to use music to learn and relax at any time felt like a really important thing to do.

"There's very little available in terms of interactive games for children with autism, which is a huge shame. By bringing together shape and colour learning with relaxing music and interactive play, I hope this project can make a real difference.

"Even though this is the end of my degree, I don't see the project ending at all. There's so much more work to do, from testing and developing the game further to finding a company to work with to build a prototype controller. This is just the start."

John's Mum worked with children with special educational needs, which inspired John to put his creative skills to a practical, beneficial use.

The project has been developed with the invaluable support of Seonaid Birse and Maggie Powell, music teachers at Kingspark School in Dundee, a dedicated school for children with learning difficulties.

Seonaid said: "The combination of the visual impact and the use of sound is very effective for working with children with autism. There's a sense of control for the pupil, which they may find difficult to achieve in a normal learning environment.

"The positive reward of seeing the flower grow when the right keys are pressed is also very important, helping make learning a positive experience for children who may have complex needs and be unable to communicate verbally."

Maggie added: "John's game really promotes positive learning and a sense of progression for children on the autistic spectrum. It's also great that the game could be used at home or in the classroom.

"These children face so many limitations in their lives. This project actually opens up their world to many more possibilities and it has huge potential for development in many, many ways."

John is now working with the school to develop his game further, and is looking to work with a commercial partner to expand the game and build a dedicated controller.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Abertay Dundee. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Abertay Dundee. "Music game for autistic children unveiled." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110526064340.htm>.
University of Abertay Dundee. (2011, May 26). Music game for autistic children unveiled. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110526064340.htm
University of Abertay Dundee. "Music game for autistic children unveiled." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110526064340.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

Newsy (July 29, 2014) If you've been looking for love online, there's a chance somebody has been looking at how you're looking. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

Newsy (July 29, 2014) Researchers have found certain facial features can make us seem more attractive or trustworthy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

University Quiz Implies Atheists Are Smarter Than Christians

Newsy (July 25, 2014) An online quiz from a required course at Ohio State is making waves for suggesting atheists are inherently smarter than Christians. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins