Improving a new design tool to Inform serious game behaviour change interventions

Karen Shanks, Mike Mannion, Karen Thomson, Julie Campbell, David Farrell

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Serious games are an increasingly popular mechanism for encouraging human behaviour change. A difficult challenge is generating game design ideas for a given behaviour change brief. This paper describes a card design tool that supports ideas generation. Each card summarises a behaviour change technique (BCT), provides an application example prompt, and identifies possible game design elements. The research question is: does the card design tool have perceived value for designers for generating ideas for behaviour change games? To evaluate the tool, four recently graduated game design students were given a set of 34 cards, instructions on using the cards, a game brief and then asked to generate ideas. The instructions included sorting the cards into piles with different headings (BCT, application example prompt, game design element). Cards were drawn randomly one at a time from each pile iteratively until all piles were exhausted. Participants recorded ideas using techniques they felt comfortable with e.g. note-taking, mind maps.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationECGBL 2021- Proceedings of the 15th European Conference on Game Based Learning
EditorsPanagiotis Fotaris
PublisherAcademic Conferences International
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781914587139
ISBN (Print)9781914587122
Publication statusPublished - 24 Sep 2021
Event15th European Conference on Game Based Learning - The University of Brighton, Brighton, United Kingdom
Duration: 23 Sep 202124 Sep 2021

Publication series

ISSN (Print)2049-0992
ISSN (Electronic)2049-100X


Conference15th European Conference on Game Based Learning
Abbreviated titleECGBL 2021
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • behaviour change game
  • behaviour change game tool
  • behaviour change techniques
  • behavioural psychology
  • serious game development tool
  • serious games for health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Education
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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