A framework to design vocabulary-based serious games for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)

A Correction to this article was published on 11 November 2019

This article has been updated


The use of serious games to help children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) learn different skills has increased in the recent past. Games, however, have not been exploited to enhance the vocabulary of these children. The serious game design framework (SGDF) and its components provide support throughout the design process, but there are no existing SGDFs that can be used to design serious games for these children to learn vocabulary skills. Therefore, in this research, a SGDF is proposed to overcome the problem of designing serious games for children with ASD. The components of the framework were identified after an extensive review of the literature on ASD and existing SGDFs. The input, process and output model was used as an underlying structure of the framework, and the identified components were logically placed in each phase of the model. The proposed framework was iteratively evaluated through expert reviews with academic experts and researchers working in the area of serious games, as well as game designers. The modified version of the framework was produced based on the comments provided by experts. This modified version was then used in the applicability evaluation of the framework with researchers and game designers. A proposed SGDF was produced based on the comments of experts. The main findings from expert reviews show that the structure, components and details of the proposed framework have been effectively refined. The use of the framework to produce serious game design and the prototype demonstrates its use in real time. The evaluation of the prototype with autistic children shows the improvement in their vocabulary learning before and after using the prototype.

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  • 11 November 2019

    In the original article, the acknowledgement section is missing. The funding information is given below:


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Khowaja, K., Salim, S.S. A framework to design vocabulary-based serious games for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Univ Access Inf Soc 19, 739–781 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10209-019-00689-4

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  • Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
  • Language comprehension skills
  • Vocabulary
  • Computer-based intervention (CBI)
  • Serious game design
  • Prototype development
  • Virtual reality
  • Augmented reality