ITCL has recently launched a video game that seeks to combat bullying. In this way, the aim is to answer questions such as what to do in a bullying situation or how we can correct this type of situation. A ‘serious game’ developed from Burgos with the aim of fighting against bullying and that allows the player to acquire responsible behavior to avoid bullying situations in the school environment.
The development is framed within the commitment acquired by the technology center to implement a methodology that allows modifying the behavior of children through technology and with the use of serious games (games whose objective is not exclusively recreational). .
The serious game ‘School of Empathy’, developed by professionals from ITCL’s Simulation and Virtual Reality Technologies Area, includes different situations in which moments in which bullying actions can be experienced in the school environment are recreated.
Victim, bully and observer
The game, with an estimated duration of 5 hours, features three modes in which the user can play: victim, bully and observer. In the development of this game, different situations are presented to be solved that make it easier for the user to put themselves in the role of all the figures.
The player, through dialogues and different dynamics in the form of mini games, “interprets” the different characters that may be immersed in a situation of these characteristics. The ultimate goal is for young people who try this game to really know what happens when bullying situations occur, learn to detect them and help solve them.
Testing in Spain, the United Kingdom and Malta
Before launching the video game, tests were carried out in which 360 young people between 12 and 14 years old from Spain, the United Kingdom and Malta participated. All of them also carried out a questionnaire to verify that an improvement in behavior was indeed detected once the game was finished.
The origin of ‘School of Empathy’ is found in the European project ‘eConfidence’, led by ITCL and co-financed by the European Commission, which seeks to develop a methodology that allows modifying the behavior of children through technology and with the use of serious games.