The research and inclusion project incluMOVE was dedicated to supporting people with intellectual disabilities in the learning and working environment from October 2017 to March 2021. Together with the project partners Femos gGmbH and Fraunhofer IPA, a gamified assistance system was developed that uses projections on a table surface to provide instructions on how to assemble a printed circuit board.
Project results open source
Our findings and results from several studies and the intensive cooperation with the neurodivergent user group are now available to the public. We publish the source code of the prototypes for free use and further development. Furthermore, the animations and the design of the virtual assistant Gregor Gouda are available for download.
The project results of the project partners Femos gGmbH and Fraunhofer IPA can be found on the official inclumove.de website.
User studies, focus group surveys and interviews marked the beginnings of the incluMOVE project. Again and again, the ACI team exchanged views with people with intellectual disabilities to find out how they imagine a digital learning and working environment.
In addition to the users’ opinions, the employees of Femos gGmbH also provided important input. This and the findings from the previous ACI project Kobelu formed the basis for the development of a gamified assistance system.
The development of Gregor Gouda
A virtual assistant was needed. There were many ideas, but also questions: It should be fun. A robot would be cool! Or would it be better to have a human being, since there is already an identification figure in the Femos teaching videos? Would you rather have a buddy character or should he embody the strict teacher? After all, this is also an education and not a game. Users should feel motivated and accepted, but at the same time not assess the situation too playfully.
Many different basic conditions were placed on the design of the virtual assistant. Therefore, the ACI developed a wide range of digital assistants and asked the users again which of these assistants corresponded best to their ideas.
Out of this iterative process came the collegiate mouse Gregor Gouda. The animations of the virtual assistant were integrated into the prototype and numerous educational videos of Femos gGmbh.
A didactic chatbot
Afterwards, the ACI asked itself how the chatbot could explain the assembly of the circuit board in an understandable and simple way. The virtual assistant Gregor Gouda accompanies users through the system and supports each individual work step with video, text and images. In addition, pick-by-light elements on the surface highlight the required components and the assembly positions.
Based on our studies, the explanations were formulated in a more positive and comprehensible way and additionally set to music by a speaker. Also, the placement of the small components is more understandable with the help of videos instead of pictures.
Gamification design with people with intellectual disabilities
How do you motivate workers to learn new steps and improve their performance? Gamification was already the approach of the predecessor project Kobelu. In incluMOVE, too, we incorporated reward elements into the design of the interface and oriented ourselves to the ideas and feedback of the neurodivergent user group.
In an interactive study, we asked users which gamification elements they preferred. Spoken praise in particular stood out. Animations should not be too fast and confusing. The user group wanted badges to collect and had some illustrative ideas of what these could look like.
After several design iterations, the final user interface design of the incluMOVE prototype emerged.
Each session, users can collect badges that symbolically reflect their achievements. Badges can be earned for unit milestones, but also for particularly fast work or error-free assembly of a circuit board. At the end, the badges are visualised in a colourful animation firework. The better the individual performance, the more powerful the fireworks.
An overview of one’s own performance can be viewed in the pause screen and is displayed in detail upon completion.
Iterative development of the prototype
The prototype became more stable, mature and adaptive through several test sessions together with users of Femos gGmbH. An editor tool was added to flexibly meet the needs of people with disabilities. Fraunhofer IPA integrated an object recognition software that supports the assembly of the printed circuit board.
We put our prototype to the test in a two-week study with the user group. Participants worked on incluMOVE for two hours each and were asked about their motivation. In addition to positive feedback and high acceptance, all participants increased their performance compared to the first session.
A productive time with good partners
Our thanks go to our project partners Femos gGmbH and Fraunhofer IPA. We could always rely on the expertise and hospitality of our partners during these three years and every joint business trip, trade fair exhibition or study was a pleasant experience.
We would also like to say a special thank you to the user group of people with disabilities. They have always been open and curious and the joint cooperation has been a great pleasure. Inclusion is a wonderful enrichment of human togetherness.
Finally, we would like to thank our associated partners Audi GmbH and the Stuttgart Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) as well as the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) for their support as project sponsors.