University of Twente Student Theses


The process of designing a Rehabilitation Agent

Biggelaar, A. van den (2020) The process of designing a Rehabilitation Agent.

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Abstract:The motivation and engagement of the patients is essential when performing physical therapy exercises for rehabilitation. The company HoloMoves makes serious games that aim to improve the motivation and engagement of its users. A virtual agent can be a useful addition to their serious games since an agent can provide information and motivation to stimulate the user to perform physical exercises. This project aims to develop a virtual agent for the game worlds of HoloMoves made for children, by focussing on the tasks, the embodiment and behaviour of an agent. First, the context of a suitable agent and therapy-related aspects were explored, by use of literature research, related work, interviews with client, expert and children. This resulted in different tasks of the agent. Next, the project researched potential embodiments by developing the Design Card method and evaluated existing agents with experts and children. This steered the design process into the direction of robotic characters. The ideation phase developed three robot designs, after which it looked at form-specific behaviour of these three shapes. Next, the realisation phase implemented the three designs into the HoloLens for the evaluations with a total of five children. The evaluations results showed that the mechanical robot, with a robotic appearance and human-like elements, was preferred most by the users. They enjoyed his energetic and motivational look and stated that he would be suitable to explain information and exercises. However, his likeability and animacy should improve by implementing the number of small movements, the smoothness of his actions, the number of simultaneous movements, the number of energetic animations, the movement of the face, and the responsiveness of the robot. This would improve the abilities of the agent to connect with the user, welcome him into the game world, provide information and motivation and activate the user to move.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:01 general works
Programme:Creative Technology BSc (50447)
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