HELLO provides an entertaining game experience to help higher elementary-aged children (9~12yr) with mild Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) develop everyday social interaction skills and discover personal interests.
04/2020 - 05/2020
(1) ASD children have difficulties with social interaction.
(2) Developing a personal interest can increase interactions with others
How could we improve social interaction for Children with ASD ?
A game for developing social interaction skills and discovering personal interests!
2 Main Games: HELLO WORLD & HELLO ME
Hello Me is an interactive game that helps young users identify and develop their individual interests such as: drawing, writing, conducting music etc.
Hello World focuses on the user developing common social interaction skills such as: grocery shopping, visiting friends and family etc. It also helps user obtain essential life skills like taking public transportation and use money.
Each game as a visually rich map that can be customized based on each user experiences.
Switch between two games easily
Colorful cartoon interface for children!
Response choices are based on appropriate to less appropriate responses from real life situations.
Voice reader feature throughout the whole game
Voice command feature for users to select answers by reading it out loud, which helps practice communication
Progress bar showing game progress
Reward system, each completed mission will be rewarded with stars, star collections can use to exchange larger rewards
Provide folders for keeping personal and game information
Customized interface settings to increase accessibility and usability of the app
Parents can monitor children's behaviors in game through shared game data on parents' devices
Research shows that children with ASD have difficulty with social interaction, including establishing and maintaining relationships, reciprocating social interaction, and communicating with others.
Many children on the autism spectrum need help to learn how to act in different social situations. They often desire to interact with others but may not know how to engage friends or may be overwhelmed by the idea of the unknown.
In addition, helping autistic children identify and foster interests can increase the opportunities for them to interact with others.
HELLO creates a space for users to practice new social skills within different locations and with different people. It links basic communication skills with real-life examples.
A little boy named Jack wants to go outside to play with other children, but he doesn’t know what to do, or what to say. His parents are very worried about him being so isolated. So one day, his mom shows him a new online game. By using this app, he has practiced social interaction skills and now has the confidence to interact with new playmates.
Jack's mother would also like to see Jack try a variety of activities to possibly expand or hone his interests and hobbies. In this case, Jack finds that he really likes visiting an art museum while using the Hello Me. His interest in art is further developed when he is able to create amazing artworks and are hung in the virtual gallery.
4 main stages in HELLO app: Log in, Survey, User ‘s Profile (Home), Hello World and Hello Me games
Due to the limitation of accessing our target audience for the usability test; the app was presented to fellow class students and the instructor. Feedback was collected from the viewers.
"Really nice interface design, looks kid-friendly enough with the pastel colors and cartoon-inspired icons."
"I thought your abundance of interactions made the design seem so well thought out"
"I think it might even be a good activity for schools' special education programs to incorporate into their daily routine!"
"A little confusing for the user was figuring out the the difference between "hello world" and "hello me"."
"Have you guys thought about including a monitoring feature for parents to monitor their children's progress and even more so, their physical location?"
"Could this app be updated to have questions about identifying facial expressions or understanding tone from voice, as some people with autism struggle with this?"
Application of Usability Heuristics
Visibility of system status - User's Profile (My Mission, My Star, My Gallery, Myself), user's location on map, progress bar, real time gaming instructions
Match between system and the real world - closely related to children's real life environments, missions based on real life situations, information appear in natural and logical order
Recognition rather than recall - real time gaming instructions, changes in game are saved and visible to user
Help users recognize diagnose, and recover from errors - feedback on decisions made in game, explanations for understanding wrong moves, direct user to right moves
Future Improvements and Expansions
- New user tutorial
- Level system in game
- Alternative reward systems
- Incorporate in special education classrooms
-Augmented Reality (AR), implement real environments in the user's community
This is a high fidelity prototype that user can click through to experience the different features of the HELLO app.