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An International Centre for Excellence in Serious Games Applied Research, Business Engagement and Study

Serious Games Institute is an operating division of Coventry University


aimed to change attitudes and behaviours using as the central learning object an immersive and engaging video game that will appeal to young people. The project will also include counselling, teaching, training and advice. According to research by the Serious Games Institute in the UK (which is part of Coventry University) there is no similar European games based intervention to change attitudes and behaviours of adolescents towards dating violence.

The game included:

  • Scenarios of different stages of a relationship typical of the age range
  • Simulated role play to provoke awareness of issues of violence in dating scenarios
  • Modelled scenarios where the player is the male/female or friend of the player in the game.

During the game feedback was given regarding the impact of courses of action on the target group, the appropriateness of the course of action selected and rewards for the selection of the most appropriate responses. The game signposted the players to support agencies.

In the UK, all 6-10 year olds consider themselves to be gamers.  The rest of Europe shows similar trends, demonstrating the growth in video games and the popularity and effectiveness of using this medium as a learning tool.

In recent years the use of technology within teaching and psychosocial intervention has increased, specifically since the inception of 'Serious Games', that is, computer game based activities which are developed in adherence to clear pedagogical principles in order to support learning or training objectives (de Freitas, 2006).

For more information please contact Prof Sara de Freitas

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