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ERIC Number: EJ1137602
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0145-482X
Improving the Audio Game-Playing Performances of People with Visual Impairments through Multimodal Training
Balan, Oana; Moldoveanu, Alin; Moldoveanu, Florica; Nagy, Hunor; Wersenyi, Gyorgy; Unnporsson, Runar
Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness, v111 n2 p148-164 Mar-Apr 2017
Introduction: As the number of people with visual impairments (that is, those who are blind or have low vision) is continuously increasing, rehabilitation and engineering researchers have identified the need to design sensory-substitution devices that would offer assistance and guidance to these people for performing navigational tasks. Auditory and haptic cues have been shown to be an effective approach towards creating a rich spatial representation of the environment, so they are considered for inclusion in the development of assistive tools that would enable people with visual impairments to acquire knowledge of the surrounding space in a way close to the visually based perception of sighted individuals. However, achieving efficiency through a sensory substitution device requires extensive training for visually impaired users to learn how to process the artificial auditory cues and convert them into spatial information. Methods: Considering all the potential advantages game-based learning can provide, we propose a new method for training sound localization and virtual navigational skills of visually impaired people in a 3D audio game with hierarchical levels of difficulty. The training procedure is focused on a multimodal (auditory and haptic) learning approach in which the subjects have been asked to listen to 3D sounds while simultaneously perceiving a series of vibrations on a haptic headband that corresponds to the direction of the sound source in space. Results: The results we obtained in a sound-localization experiment with 10 visually impaired people showed that the proposed training strategy resulted in significant improvements in auditory performance and navigation skills of the subjects, thus ensuring behavioral gains in the spatial perception of the environment.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Hungary
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A