is a Specific Targeted Research or Innovation Project (STREP)
funded by the European Commission. In this project nine partners
from six European countries are involved.
for Mixed Realities, Germany
College Dublin, Ireland
of Liége, Belgium
of Graz, Austria
for Advanced Imaging, Germany
Team members at CSS:
• Dr. habil.
Jürgen Heller (until November 2006)
Michael D. Kickmeier-Rust
• Mag. Birgit
ELEKTRA will develop an innovative design and
development methodology for producing e-learning experiences.
This methodology will be derived from combining State of the
Art (SoA) research in cognitive science, pedagogical theory
and neuroscience with best industrial practice in computer
game design and e-learning software design.
As a demonstrator ELEKTRA will produce a 3D virtual reality
based virtual learning environment, in which learners can
experience learning experiences as rich as gaming experiences.
These enhanced learning experiences will improve the knowledge
transfer of the learner through innovative knowledge representation
and visualisation: The learners will be able to actively interact
with and visualise the relationships between concepts and
engage in multimodal approach of concepts. The anticipated
outcome of ELEKTRA is new approach to design and development
of e-learning experiences that is underpinned and supported
by research and evaluation findings.
The aim of the ELEKTRA project is the creation
of an e-learning game that is apt to overcome the main problems
of the existing SoA e-learning games.
• SoA e-learning games use traditional learning methods
that are ineffective and do not motivate the learner
• SoA e-learning games do not offer an immersive and
coherent learning experience. They lack a holistic approach
that combines the actual learning with the gameplay in one
immersive and interactive environment (gameworld).
• In general SoA e-learning games can not be used in
class room or for classroom related homework.
In response to these problems ELEKTRA’s
interdisciplinary research and development work will utilize
design elements and concepts of SoA computer games in order
to combine the motivating and immersive game experience in
such games with e-learning techniques that are required for
knowledge representation and transfer.
The main research challenge for ELEKTRA is the successful
enhancement and integration of both worlds – SoA computer
games and SoA e-learning techniques - in one virtual learning
Therefore the following design concepts and elements used
in SoA computer games on the one hand and SoA e-learning techniques
on the other hand will be adopted for their integration in
ELEKTRA’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE):
SoA computer game elements that will contribute
to ELEKTRA’s VLE:
• Visualization (appealing 3D-graphics and animation)
• Interaction and Navigation (User centric perspective,
intuitive navigation in a 3D-environment, dynamic gameplay,
simulation and interactivity)
• Storytelling & Emotion ( dramaturgical elements
and narrative scenes in games, that enrich and drive the gameplay
by means of using NPCs )
• Inherent didactic design (challenge, goals, adventure
& discovery, etc.)
SoA e-learning elements that will contribute
to ELEKTRA’s VLE:
• Learner modelling and assessment (learner model, assessment
• Knowledge representation (knowledge structure; concept
maps and ontologies)
• Learning content (Learning object modelling, Meta
data for learning objects)
|The integration of these elements for ELEKTRA’s
VLE will take place in the development of ELEKTRA’s
framework. This development will be based on pedagogical,
cognitive and neuroscientific research that enframes the
overall development work with a design methodology for
The ELEKTRA framework will be used as a demonstrator by
providing a platform upon which research can apply the
pedagogical learning game scenarios and build a playable
learning game based on ELEKTRA’s methodology for
Image courtesy of LMR