Master’s Thesis: Designing a board game to enhance memory retention.

What impact does playing board games have on memory retention in higher education design studies? 

Nowadays with the overload of information and technologies, it is very easy to get lost in the process of learning. It depends on the individual and the method of teaching. Some people can retain information better if they are able to actively engage with the material and apply it to their lives, rather than using traditional methods of memorizing and writing information in exams. Exams can be a good way to assess an individual’s understanding of a subject, but they may not be the best way to ensure that the information is retained in the long-term. It can be hard to remember all the information when you only read from a textbook. 

Board games can be effective tools for improving memory and cognitive skills, and research has shown that they can be especially helpful for teaching new concepts and helping students retain information (Chang et al. 2022). Board games can improve memory, concentration, and cognitive skills, as well as promote collaboration and problem-solving skills. 

The idea is to take a critical look at the current state of teaching methods in the field of design (Vance, and Smith 2010. Dimitrios et al. 2013, Noblitt). The thesis will focus on trying to improve the memory retention of students with an interactive and gamified technique. Therefore, the target group for this project is design students between 18 and 30 years old. It will examine how this problem has been exacerbated by the growing emphasis on preparing for testing rather than learning. After this initial research and testing, the thesis will consider potential solutions to the issue and propose new ways to reform the system with the creation of a fun board game that will be tested in an experiment later. 

In terms of structure, it will start with the basic research that will determine similar cases, ideas, or best practises. A public online database will be created, containing all the data obtained from the case studies (e.g., This content will be a help point for the research phase. With this information, and a possible initial survey, the importance of the topic will be specified. 

The development will start considering information collected in the research phase with the idea of creating good and understandable mechanics. With this done, the prototyping and testing loop will start to find the best design for the boardgame. Once it is satisfactory, the visual design will be finalised, and the game will be created. The last step will be to answer the research question using an AB Testing exercise with two groups of users.

As a result, an experiment can be conducted to compare the effectiveness of a board game with traditional teaching techniques in improving memory retention. The experiment would involve two groups of people, one group playing a board game focused on a subject and the other group using traditional techniques such as reading from a textbook. The experiment would measure the 

performance of each group before and after the experiment, including the number of facts they can remember and how long they can retain them. The experiment could also measure variables such as the level of engagement and enjoyment of the participants. 

The goal of the experiment would be to provide evidence that board games can be more effective than traditional techniques in improving memory retention. The proposed board game would be designed with the principles of design in mind and target a specific group of students. To be able to reach this conclusion, the design process would involve research, analysis of existing board game designs and mechanics, playtesting to find the best user experience, and visual design. 


Bochennek, Konrad, Boris Wittekindt, Stefanie-Yvonne Zimmermann, and Thomas Klingebiel. ‘More than Mere Games: A Review of Card and Board Games for Medical Education’. Medical Teacher 29, no. 9–10 (2007): 941–48. 

Chang, You-Syuan, Sophia H. Hu, Shih-Wei Kuo, Kai-Mei Chang, Chien-Lin Kuo, Trung V. Nguyen, and Yeu-Hui Chuang. ‘Effects of Board Game Play on Nursing Students’ Medication Knowledge: A Randomized Controlled Trial’. Nurse Education in Practice 63 (1 August 2022): 103412. 

Dimitrios, Belias, Sdrolias Labros, Kakkos Nikolaos, Maria Koutiva, and Koustelios Athanasios. ‘Traditional Teaching Methods vs. Teaching through the Application of Information and Communication Technologies in the Accounting Field: Quo Vadis?’ European Scientific Journal 9, no. 28 (2013). 

Ezezika, Obidimma, Maria Fusaro, James Rebello, and Asal Aslemand. ‘The Pedagogical Impact of Board Games in Public Health Biology Education: The Bioracer Board Game’. Journal of Biological Education, 13 April 2021, 1–12. 

Gobet, Fernand, Jean Retschitzki, and Alex de Voogt. Moves in Mind: The Psychology of Board Games. Psychology Press, 2004. 

Hinebaugh, Jeffrey P. A Board Game Education. R&L Education, 2009. 

Mozer, Michael C., and Robert V. Lindsey. Predicting and Improving Memory Retention: Psychological Theory Matters in the Big Data Era, 2016. 

Noblitt, Lynnette, Diane E Vance, and Michelle L DePoy Smith. ‘A Comparison of Case Study and Traditional Teaching Methods for Improvement of Oral Communication and Critical-Thinking Skills’. Journal of College Science Teaching 39, no. 5 (2010): 26. 

Phuong, Hoang Yen, and Pham Nguyen. ‘The Impact of Board Games on EFL Learners’ Grammar Retention’. International Journal of Research & Method in Education 7 (January 2017): 61–66. 

Woods, Stewart. Eurogames: The Design, Culture and Play of Modern European Board Games. McFarland, 2012. 

Analysis of a Master Thesis: Gamification in Tourism – A Design Thinking Approach to Memorable Experience Design.

For this exercise, a master thesis written by Rolf Oftedal, Markus Hasler Sveen & Kristian Listou Riksheim for the school of economics and business at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences was analysed. The paper was written in 2021, so it is quite current (it mentions the pandemic) and its title is “Gamification in Tourism – A Design Thinking Approach to Memorable Experience Design”.

Level of design

The design is quite simple. It certainly shows the formality of the subject and the document, but it can look a bit sloppy when it comes to displaying images.

In terms of text and font sizes, it is a very good design. Differentiating between the different sections is easy at a glance thanks to the separations. 

It could have been more pleasant if more images or graphics had been used to show the content quickly and visually.

Degree of innovation

The topic of tourism and gamification is quite common. Many designers are using these concepts as a way of addressing users. This may make the topic not very innovative, but it still has a lot to be explored and is seeing its peak with the emergence of COVID-19. Many tourism companies are considering gamification as a means of reaching the public again.


The project appears to have been carried out independently. It is true that it is done by a group of three people, but the analyses of each example and all the details of the project are their own conclusions.

Outline and structure

The presented structure is very well organised and gives you important data at a first glance thanks to the abstract divided into background, purpose, method and findings. With only one page it gives you a clear and straightforward summary. 

The organisation is progressive and takes you from theoretical beginnings to a practical end with many results. At no point is any content shown that has not been explained before, which makes the reading a very simple task. The authors follow the chosen study method throughout: Empathise, Define, Ideation & Prototyping and Testing & Iteration.

Degree of communication

Referring back to the previous point, it is very easy to read as the more complex terms are explained throughout. 

Moreover, as it is a project carried out by different authors from different disciplines, the content is very complete and the explanations are simplified as much as possible.

Scope of the work

It is a very comprehensive project with three authors coming from different fields. This ensures that the content covers everything that is needed. 

It may be a project that individually could be considered too much work, but as a team and with a good organisation, an exemplary result can be achieved.

Orthography and accuracy

Spelling is correct, and accuracy is exemplary. Information from different backgrounds is visible, making it a comprehensive work.


The document is correctly cited and has an extensive bibliography (more than four pages). It is true that at a quick glance it is difficult to see the points cited as there are no footnotes, but they still include a correct citation type.

Oftedal, R; Hasler, M; Listou, K. “Gamification in Tourism – A Design Thinking Approach to Memorable Experience Design.“ Master’s Thesis, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, 2021.

Kids and Interaction (X): Exhibition spaces for children (measures)

It is very important to bear in mind that a children’s space must be suitable for its users.
Children’s facilities are often the most complex to accommodate, as they need to be accessible to accompanying adults as well. In addition, as in any other facility, it is necessary to take into account people with reduced mobility, adapting heights and sizes.

Let’s remember that all the above details are determined according to the age range of 6 to 8 years old. Not only because this is the target public of this project, but also because at this age it is necessary to limit the range as it is a time when physical and personal changes occur rapidly.

Taking into account this range, it is necessary to know the approximate height of our audience. In this case, it is very similar between the sexes and is between 115 cm and 127 cm tall. This means that any table, chair, device or sign should be within the range of vision and accessibility of a person of that height.

Knowing this, an analysis of the correct heights and spaces can be carried out. Reference is made to a guide for Glasgow museum exhibitions and a standard accessibility guide for exhibitions.

These guidelines determine that for ages 5-12 years, seating should have a minimum height of 32.5 cm and a maximum height of 45 cm; while standing desks should be between 52 cm and 82.5 cm. The knee space under these tables should be 61 cm high, 61 cm deep, 76 cm wide.

In addition, a child’s viewing height is between 101 cm and 147.4 cm when the child is standing; and 85.6 cm and 95 cm when the child is sitting. This allows a reach radius of between 54.5 cm and 88 cm when standing and 41 cm and 70.5 cm when seated.

This includes the recommended widths between tables, walls or shelves. This should be a minimum of 183 cm to allow space for two wheelchairs. In any case, a space of 223.5 cm is recommended for specific areas for children.

A summary table of all these concepts is included below.


García, I. (2021, May 7). Pesos y estaturas en niños recomendadas por la OMS. Todo Papás.
Glasgow City Council. (n.d.). A Practical Guide for Exhibitions.
Ingenium accesibility standards for exhibitions. (2018).

(NIME) Yixiao Zhang, Gus Xia, Mark Levy, and Simon Dixon. 2021. COSMIC: A Conversational Interface for Human-AI Music Co-Creation. 

Reference to article:

There are more and more forms of AI in different fields. From assistants on websites, to online bots (cleverbot) and including the famous voice assistants on phones (Alexa, Siri).

I have always found the use of these interesting, not only for the amount of information they contain, but also for discovering the funniest answers (like the ones in the images below). That’s why I find this paper so interesting. Applying all this AI knowledge to the world of music can be complex and at the same time super interesting.

In this paper they talk about COSMIC, a (COnverSational Interface for Human-AI MusIc Co-Creation). This bot not only responds appropriately to the user’s questions and comments, but it is also capable of generating a melody from what the user asks for. In the following video you can see an example (referenced in the same paper).

The complexity of these projects is always in the back of my mind. Knowing how devices are capable of reacting like humans seems to me to be a great advance that at the same time can be a bit alarming.

Still, this case opens up a lot of new opportunities. Using this same system, a new method of learning can even be generated. After all, this bot simply edits parameters of a melody (speed, pitch…) to resemble different emotions. One could therefore learn how different emotions tend to imply different sounds or speeds, or many other details.

Kids and Interaction (IX): Best typographies for kids between 6 and 8 years old.

Using text in designs for 6-8 year olds can be tricky, especially because at first, you try to avoid showing a lot of information. Even so, it is important to know that the little text that is shown should be very understandable and pleasant.

When children learn to read or even learn what letters are, they start by recognising each character one by one. This is a very slow process and can be very boring and frustrating.

This is why, in children’s books, the typeface usually has a warm and friendly look, with simple letterforms. The aperture of the letters should be rounded and open, not angular or rectangular.

To facilitate legibility, it is not only necessary to take into account the use of adapted language, but also to be aware that the use of condensed typefaces, in italics or the exclusive use of capital letters can be a problem. All these details make typefaces complex and difficult to understand for people who are still in the learning phase.

Apart from avoiding decorative or complex typefaces (realistic typefaces should be adopted), there are other details related to the properties of typefaces that should be taken into account: line spacing, size, x-height and single-storey “a” and “g”.

To easily understand these details, an image is shared from Material Design, a page that contains information on all kinds of design elements. In this image you can clearly see the different parts of a typeface.

Firstly, it’s recommend the use of typefaces with a size between 14pt and 24pt (depending on the age). Related to this idea, think about the line spacing of the text, which is recommended to be between 4pt and 6pt bigger.

Regarding the x-height, it is important to know that typefaces with larger x-heights are usually easier to read than those with short x-heights, especially for children.

Not only that, but this x-height is a very important point for creating typeface pairs, if their height is similar, it will create more harmony. To better understand this concept, Ricardo Magalhães gives as an example in his article the typeface Gill Sans and Fira Sans.

Although both appear to be the same size with respect to their first letter (in capitals), it can be seen how the x-height (marked by the red line) of the second typeface is larger than the first, so the harmony might not be good.

Finally, for very young readers, texts should use typefaces that have the single-story “a” and “g” (also called children’s characters), as these are the lowercase forms that pre-school and school-age children learn to write. This concept refers to the way the two letters are written.

Double-story letters can be reminiscent of older typefaces, while single-story letters look more modern and simplified. For this reason they are more suitable for a child audience, as they are undecorated, simple and straightforward.


Varro, J. (2021, September 16th). The easiest fonts for kids to read.
Strizver, I. (n.d.). Typography for Children.
Material Design. (n.d.). Understanding typography [Material Design].
Magalhães, R. (2017, May 24th). To choose the right typeface, look at its x-height. Prototypr.
Cruz, A (2019). Why do some letters like “a” or “g” look different on a computer than when normally written?

Kids and Interaction (VIII): How to design interactive exhibitions for kids? Analysing data from database.

Projects have continued to be added to the database over the last few days in order to gather sufficient information to help us verify the reality of the points analysed in previous posts. The database can be found online in the link:

For this reason, several projects have been added (13 so far), but I would like to add even more to the database. Even so, and taking into account the long list of references pending to be analysed, the data collected are similar to those previously studied. With this, the important points that are usually repeated in any interactive exhibition for children are checked.

It has to be said that, due to the current situation with COVID, the analysis has been a bit hard. Not being able to visit certain places either because of the pandemic or lack of time, there are details that are missed. The aim was to collect information from visual materials, which limited the number of projects to be analysed.

Now, a short analysis of the different sections of data found from the analysed projects is discussed.

Interaction data

In terms of interaction, we find that the vast majority of exhibits mix GUI and TUI models, making them much more attractive to children. In addition, the spaces are usually activity-centred or user-centred. This depends on whether the project aims to teach or influence the user, or is focused on simply discovering or hanging out.

User experience for kids

Focusing on the user experience for children, and using the questions and data studied in posts II and III, we have found very similar answers to those studied in those posts. In some cases the answers were obvious, but in others, they have varied from point to point.

All the interfaces analysed had instant feedback to the user, whether it was a GUI or a TUI, as the user was always aware of what changes were being made.

In the case of navigation, the responses were more varied. Both navigation through the digital interface and navigation through the physical space were taken into account. For this reason, there are some projects that have more than one type of navigation. Even so, navigation by steps has been the most common, as the aim is to organise the information by steps so that it is told in the form of a story and is easier to understand.

In terms of text, three parameters were taken into account: simplicity, size and quantity. In the case of simplicity and size, it was complicated in some cases to analyse it, as there were very few visual references. Even so, it has been shown that the texts are usually simple (adapted to the children’s vocabulary) and the text sizes are usually larger than usual. Surprisingly, the amount of text has been more adjusted, in some cases there was a lot of text (6 projects), and in others the text was scarce (7 projects).

If we think about the visual and auditory inputs, we find three points to analyse: sounds, animations and vivid colours. The case of sound has been complicated, because with the visual material it was difficult to observe this point. On the other hand, animations were present in 10 of the 13 projects, so it can be determined that the use of animations is common. Finally, the use of colours was clearly vivid. In almost all of the exhibits (11 out of 13), bright colours are used to create a good atmosphere. The only ones using more muted colours are those related to nature, as they are more earthy colours.

Finally in this section, two points should be taken into account: the icons and the option to customise. In the case of the icons, it was studied that in order to address children, care must be taken, as understanding them can be complicated. This is why it has been observed that in 7 projects there were no icons, and in those that did have them, the vast majority (5 of the 13) were literal, i.e. they resemble reality and leave no room for doubt. The case of personalisation was surprising. In only 5 of the projects is this option available.

The 125 Universal Principles of Design

The vast majority of the principles explained in posts V and VI are used in the projects, even so, there are big differences between them. In order to better understand the contents, the principles have been divided into three types: related to the physical space, related to the way content is displayed and related to the design.

In the important principles for the organisation of the physical space, it is clear that accessibility and the entry point to the exhibition are clear. All projects rely on these as it is necessary to adapt the interface to children. For this, it is not only a question of simplifying the text, but also of adjusting the sizes and heights of the stations to those of the youngest children.

In those related to the way information is displayed, legibility and the use of images over text are key, as well as the importance of highlighting information in texts and immersion. It should also be noted that the vast majority (8-9 out of 13) use methods such as chunking or advance organiser to divide information into islands and make it easier to remember. Finally, the use of icons is again taken into account, and how this is reduced to only 6 of the 13 projects.

In terms of design, the results were low. It is true that the importance of colour is maintained in the 13 projects analysed, but the points related to the environment (biophilia effect and savannah preference) are not very much taken into account, as the spaces are looking for a sense of immersion and leave aside the use of nature so as not to distract the user. Finally, the use of more rounded and unaggressive designs has only been observed in 5 of the 13 projects, which seems surprising.

With this we conclude that although there are points that seem to be well determined, there are others such as the amount of text, the option of personalisation or the analysis of the design (contour bias) that need more referents to determine a result. But even so, it is understood that interfaces for children follow a series of principles that tend to be repeated in the vast majority.

The results have certainly been interesting, but more time is needed to add projects. In any case, the intention is to use this website as a base and add all the references in order to keep an updated database of projects that can help me in the future.

Kids and Interaction (VII): 125 Universal Principles of Design. Part 3. Another principles to have in mind.

As discussed in the previous post, it is again intended to mention principles that may be important for the design and organisation of children’s exhibitions. Although it is true that they all have a certain importance when designing a new project at any point. I will mention those that have caught my attention.

In this case, we will mention those principles that may be important, but are difficult to analyse, so they cannot be added to the data included in the database mentioned in post number III.

These principles are taken from the book Universal Principles of Design, Revised and Updated: 125 Ways to Enhance Usability, Influence Perception, Increase Appeal, Make Better Design Decisions, and Teach Through Design. Listed below are those that may be important to keep in mind when making interfaces for children, they will be organised in alphabetical order.

Garbage in – garbage out

This principle aims to explain the importance of getting the right input in order to get the right output. For this purpose, the use of warnings and confirmations when pressing buttons is recommended.

In the case of children this can be a way to avoid errors, as it may be easier for them to misinterpret the content.

Gutenberg diagram

A diagram that describes the general pattern followed by the eyes when looking to information. It will be important to keep this in mind in order to place the little information in an organised and understandable way.

3 Design Layouts: Gutenberg Diagram, Z-Pattern, And F-Pattern - Vanseo  Design
Gutenberg diagram

Okham’s Razor

Implicit in Ockham’s razor is the idea that unnecessary elements decrease a design’s efficiency and increase the probability of unanticipated consequences. Adding unnecessary content can be distracting, especially in interfaces aimed at children. Children tend to click on everything (as we studied in post II), so avoid adding content that could be clicked on by mistake.


It is important to target the content of an interface to our audience. In this case, the idea is to target children (to reduce, children between 6 and 8 years old), so the ease of reading is very important, especially because of the amount of vocabulary that is understood by children at this age.

There are many formulas to check that a text is easy to read, in this case the Fry graph is presented, in which certain calculations must be made from a piece of text of about 100 words to determine the complexity of the text. In our case, we should focus on fitting levels 1, 2, 3 for children between 6 and 8 years old.

Fry's Graph
Fry’s readability graph.


Fry, E. B. (1969). The readability graph validated at primary levels. The reading teacher22(6), 534-538.

Hernandez, A., & Resnick, M. L. (2013, September). Placement of call to action buttons for higher website conversion and acquisition: An eye tracking study. In Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting (Vol. 57, No. 1, pp. 1042-1046). Sage CA: Los Angeles, CA: SAGE Publications.

Lidwell, W., Holden, K., Butler, J., & Elam, K. (2010). Universal Principles of Design, Revised and Updated: 125 Ways to Enhance Usability, Influence Perception, Increase Appeal, Make Better Design Decisions, and Teach Through Design. Rockport Publishers.

Kids and Interaction (VI): 125 Universal Principles of Design. Part 2.

This second part is a continuation of the previous analysis of the 125 Universal Design Principles. In this case, I will mention the principles that are easy enough to analyse so they can be included in the database generated previously in the post III. This ones were found in between the last 95 principles of the book Universal Principles of Design, Revised and Updated: 125 Ways to Enhance Usability, Influence Perception, Increase Appeal, Make Better Design Decisions, and Teach Through Design.

When reading the rest of the principles, I realised that a lot of them are useful, although difficult to analyse on site, especially without being able to access the exhibits in person and having to rely on texts, videos and images. Therefore, another post will be dedicated to mention interesting principles for children’s interface design.

The principles and the reasons why they might be interesting are listed below. Some of them will be grouped together because of their similarities.

Important for the exhibition organisation (physical space)

Entry point

The Entry Point principle aims to explain the best ways to give a good first impression of the exhibition. For this, both Points of Prospect and Progressive Lures should be taken into account. The aim is to achieve a good navigation of the space, so that it is not only easy, but also attractive.

The clear example shown in the book is the queues at theme parks, where not only the long queue is hidden, but on the way to the attraction there are various distractions (televisions, stories…).


Similar to the previous principle, the aim is to organise the space in the best possible way. To this end, what are called unobstructed views (prospects) and areas of concealment and retreat (refuges) are taken into account. A good space is one in which people will be able to see what is there without needing to be seen. It is about giving some privacy in a shared space.

In the case of children’s exhibits, you could create walls that resemble mazes.


In this principle, many points are taken into account, such as orientation and decision making.

For a children’s exhibition, it may be interesting to allow them freedom of play and discovery, but there may be other installations that seek order, so a navigation map could be included to give the children a sense of adventure (immersion).


In order to get the user to concentrate on the installation, it is necessary to distract them from the real world. That’s why the installations that provide the most fun and satisfaction are those that get the user out of the real world and into the adventure.

As previously mentioned in the Wayfinding principle, it can be interesting for the child to experience his or her own adventure with a map of the room included.


In order to attract users, it often helps to use storytelling, i.e. a story that brings the user closer to the content of the exhibition.

This detail can help the child’s immersion much more, as having a story that guides them through the different points could be a favourable detail.

Savana Preference

Related to the principle of Biophilia Effect (seen in the previous post), this indicates that savannah landscapes are usually preferred over other landscapes.

The book itself explains that this is a very common detail in the perception of children, who prefer more park-like spaces.

Important for the way of showing information


It is important how much text we want to highlight using highlighting methods such as bold, italics or underlining. However, it is important not to overuse this concept.

You can use methods such as colours, typeface or even the blinking effect (which is used more in lights than in text).


In the same way, the text sizes as well as the contrast of the background with the text have to be taken into account.

This can be a difficult principle to analyse from photos or videos alone, but it can be reduced to questions posed in post III such as:
Is the text size large?
How much text is there?

Iconic Representation

This was an important point mentioned in previous posts, since when looking at interfaces aimed at children, they tend to take everything they see seriously. That is why special attention should be paid to the type of icon displayed. The most appropriate for children would be similarity (images that are visually analogous) and examples (commonly associated).

Picture Superiority Effect

This principle seems obvious, but it becomes even more important when addressing children. As discussed in post II, it is important to reduce the amount of text in interfaces aimed at children and increase the amount of images. In the end, images are remembered much more than text.


Lidwell, W., Holden, K., Butler, J., & Elam, K. (2010). Universal Principles of Design, Revised and Updated: 125 Ways to Enhance Usability, Influence Perception, Increase Appeal, Make Better Design Decisions, and Teach Through Design. Rockport Publishers.

Kids and Interaction (V): 125 Universal Principles of Design. Part 1.

After analysing a few examples of interactive children’s exhibits and looking at the results obtained from the database, they went on to read and research the 125 Universal Design Principles.

To this end, it was decided to update the progress found, as the book is very comprehensive and detailed.

After reading the first 30 principles, we found some very interesting details that we considered very important to use in exhibitions for children.

These principles and the reasons why they might be interesting are listed below.

This is a very important concept in design, but especially in design for children, as it is necessary to adapt the devices so that children can access and understand them. That is why, within the concepts of this principle, operability (everyone should be able to use the design) and simplicity (everyone should be able to understand the design) stand out.

Advance organiser
This principle is very important and is somewhat related to the simplicity seen in the previous section. This principle stresses the importance of being able to explain concepts so that everyone is able to understand them. To do this, the idea of using words that children already understand is used, from which the main concept is generated and explained.

Biophilia Effect
Spaces reminiscent of nature reduce stress and increase concentration. When planning an interactive exhibition for children, it is necessary to understand that children need to be as concentrated as possible in order to carry out the actions. That is why trying to create a natural environment can help.

This concept also relates to the way in which information is displayed. It is necessary to divide the content into units in order not to launch too much content in too little time.

Obviously colour is a very important point, which was already analysed previously. In the case of children, more saturated colours should be used to give more excitement and dynamism.

Contour Bias
In this case, we talk about the importance of using more rounded edges that make the user feel closer to the object. Still, it is true that straighter edges can be aggressive but they certainly attract the user’s attention. Still, in my opinion, I don’t think it is a necessary thing to use with children.

Constraint and control
I place both concepts together as they are related. They consider the importance of knowing how much control the user should have. The constraint relates to the limitations that should be placed on the user. In this way, both work together to limit and leave the necessary freedom to the user.

Obviously there are many more important concepts, but these listed above are, in my opinion, the most important for children. The idea is to finalise the list of principles and add some details about these principles to the databases, to continue analysing interactive exhibits in order to understand the correct and best use of resources to generate the most impactful exhibits for children.


Lidwell, W., Holden, K., Butler, J., & Elam, K. (2010). Universal Principles of Design, Revised and Updated: 125 Ways to Enhance Usability, Influence Perception, Increase Appeal, Make Better Design Decisions, and Teach Through Design. Rockport Publishers.

Kids and Interaction (IV): The importance of the ICT in learning environments.

We are all aware that Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) are making inroads and entering each and every sector of our society, including educational institutions, an area in which ICT has become a means of educational innovation.

Educators and students are currently facing a “galaxy of technologies” (Cabrero Almenara 2010), which allow educators to break down barriers that include space-time, among others. A galaxy that is governed by the Internet, a great current competitor to textbooks, which opens the doors to information, to sharing personal visions and also to transmitting knowledge.

Today’s classrooms are full of technology, although it is true that there is a great “digital divide” (Cabrero Almenara 2004), the reality is not the same in all schools, institutes or centres, nor in all countries. Even so, many of them replace traditional blackboards with projectors and other technological resources in their classrooms.

So, if there are so many technologies, what is the problem, and where does this fear of ICT come from? Mark Prensky presents a possible answer to this question in 2001, with the difference between “Digital Natives” and “Digital Immigrants”. The world is changing, and so should education: “Our students have changed radically. Today’s students are no longer the people our educational system was designed to teach. (Prensky 2001).

These individuals are the first generations to be born surrounded by computers, video games and technologies in general, making digital language their native language. This makes their way of thinking completely different from that of previous generations, which creates a significant gap when it comes to speaking the same language. Here is the problem, these Digital Immigrants do not believe that their students can study in front of ICT because they cannot (they were not born surrounded by ICT, they are not used to it) (Prensky 2001). This leads them to keep the same educational methods that were applied to them, missing great learning opportunities for these Digital Natives.

So, is it the Digital Natives who must give up their way of thinking, or is it the Digital Immigrants who must adapt? The first option will largely involve forgetting to educate these individuals until they are old enough to educate themselves. The second option will simply consider introducing these new media into the classroom.

This option is straightforward, as there are now a wide variety of video games or interactive experiences focused on education. When a student interacts with his or her environment, plays games and even has fun, he or she will internalise more of the content received (Sanford & Madill 2007; Schaaf 2012).

Therefore, we must lose the fear of ICT in education, and start to see it as a way to improve it. Educating with and for ICT.


Cabero Almenara, Julio. «Los retos de la integración de las TICs en los procesos educativos. Límites y posibilidades». Perspectiva Educacional, Formación de Profesores, 2010. 

Prensky, Marc. «Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants». On the Horizon, October 2001. 

Prensky, Marc. «Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants Part 2». On the Horizon, December 2001. 

Sanford, Kathy, y Leanna Madill. «Understanding the Power of New Literacies through Video Game Play and Design». Canadian Journal of Education, 2007.