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INTERN: Game Based Evaluation of Technology Literacy

The Project: Game Based Evaluation of Technology Literacy

The Goal: Create a methodology for evaluating peopled with cognitive disabilities technology literacy in an engaging and non-stressful way.

Why: People with cognitive disabilities are typically overlooked in the job market. The job opportunities are often limited by assumptions of their skills and abilities. Many of the evaluation tools don’t take into account the growth of new technology and tools that are used today in the job market.

Our aim is to create a game that would utilize the skills needed to do inventory. The field of inventory tracking has grown with new technology over the past decade. The tools used in inventory tracking range from scanners, RFID tagging and the like, as well as manual input on mobile devices.

The Internship:
We are looking for intern(s) to build a prototype of a narrative game that will assess an individual’s skills for inventory.

The Narrative:
The premise of the experience is that it takes place on a nature preserve island. The animals are somehow lost and the player needs to find the animals and return them to the nature preserve. It is important that the animals get back with rapid climate changes they will not survive long. The player not only has to identify the right type of animal but within a group identity the only animals that belong on the nature preserve.

We have two roles:
Instructional Designer:
This intern will focus on researching the process of tracking inventory. They will identify the skills and abilities need to be successful in this position. This role will also work with the game designer on translating this into game play.

Game Designer
This intern will focus on the design and development the game. They will work with the Instructional Designer on translating the raw data on skills sets and abilities into meaningful game play. This person does not need to be an uber coder but they do need to have the skills to produce the game in a digital format that can be access over the web. We are open to any application or ideas as long as web based. (Flash, scratch, and the like)

The interns will have access to the Chimes staff as a resource for starting their work. Chimes is located in Baltimore, Maryland. The majority of the communication will be though phone or web. There will be opportunities to visit the Chimes campus and meet the participants who will be testing out the prototype.

This project’s focus is on developing working game mechanics and evaluating the validity of using a game to access technology literacy. While a robust application and highly render visuals are ideal for a final product, what we are looking for here is prototype that can be tested by the participants. Chimes instructors will guide the participants through the game. The game itself does not have to carry the narrative and there is the opportunity to incorporate hardcopy materials in the process. See example of simple test we did a few months ago.

Previous Project
We have run a preliminary workshop on game –like learning with the Chimes participants. The participants had to find their way around the Baltimore zoo. Here is a link to the project. It is barebones in visuals and technology to run it.  The participants were guided by the instructors in the room and had printed instructions for the directions. They also had a card and were given stickers to track their progress.

As simple as this one is, the instructors are still using it with the participants.

Contact Pollie Barden at
If you are interested in the internship, have questions, want to know more, etc…

Each intern will receive a $1000 stipend for a semester commitment to the project.

Bridge Multimedia is a New York City-based content services company dedicated to supporting all facets of universally accessible media for entertainment, educational, commercial, and government applications.

Chimes is a international multiservice agency delivering a wide range of programs, services and supports for nearly 10,000 people of all ages and many levels of ability.