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Appears in:
Pages: 1912-1924
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-608-8860-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2016.1379

Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain

EQUINO: A VIDEOGAME THAT COMPLEMENTS EQUINE-ASSISTED THERAPIES AND ACTIVITIES FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

C. Queiruga, F.J. Díaz, T. Arce

Universidad Nacional de la Plata (ARGENTINA)
Equine assisted therapies are a type of Animal-Assisted Therapies and Activities (AATA) known as equine rehabilitation using the horse therapeutically and aimed at persons with physical, cognitive, sensory, psychological and social disabilities, diagnosed adequately for the activity and evaluated accordingly. They constitute an integral and complementary therapeutic approach proposing a trans-disciplinarian perspective aiming at progressive wellbeing of persons in their biological, psychic and social dimensions, requiring professionals licensed for such end. The main benefits of this therapy are as follows: increasing neuromotor execution skills, improving response to sensory processing and integration, favoring cognitive aspects such as improving visual attention, encouraging concentration, augmenting response capacity to concrete tasks, promoting understanding, etc, as well as favoring behavior, affectivity and social participation.

The survey performed in multiple AATA institutions of Argentina shows that in general the population participating in equine rehabilitation is composed of children and adolescents; in many cases it is natural to use videogames and digital devices such as smart phones, tablets, joysticks, etc. In this sense, videogames play an important role as an instrument of proximity to the world of children and adolescents.
Currently, the word “serious game” is reserved for the set of videogames and simulators whose goal is to educate, train and inform.

Multiple studies have shown that people react positively to the stimuli engaged by videogames, generating wellbeing, improving response times and in some circumstances improving knowledge, participation and motivation. Videogames offer players representations of the problem being studied, allowing players to take on realistic parts where they face challenges, learn from the experience and from actions of their own and by others. Some of the main benefits of videogames in relation to skill development are: hand-eye coordination; visual sharpness, quicker reaction, attention to multiple stimuli, better interaction with others, higher motivation for achievements, greater frustration tolerance, risk-taking, problem-solving and decision-making capacities.

The eQuino project consists of the development of a videogame at the UNLP (National University of La Plata) together with the social organization CEDICA (Riding Center for Underprivileged and Disabled Persons of La Plata). eQuino recreates in a virtual, immersive, seemingly real environment what students engage in during an AATA session, constituting a complement to therapy and activities at CEDICA, lengthening the state of wellbeing for students who are for some reason unable to attend habitual therapy. The current version of eQuino is a single player version whereby a first person character recreates the activities the child engages in with the horses at the CEDICA tracks, enabling content retention. One of the goals of eQuino is to get the student to identify with the character in the game, offering tools for the child to build their own character and by means of the proposal of challenges. eQuino was tested among 15 students which included children and teenagers between 8 and 18 years of age with a range of disabilities. Results obtained were encouraging and an important precedent for new opportunities of this type, to continue developing all the alternatives eQuino allows to incorporate.
@InProceedings{QUEIRUGA2016EQU,
author = {Queiruga, C. and D{\'{i}}az, F.J. and Arce, T.},
title = {EQUINO: A VIDEOGAME THAT COMPLEMENTS EQUINE-ASSISTED THERAPIES AND ACTIVITIES FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES},
series = {8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN16 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-608-8860-4},
issn = {2340-1117},
doi = {10.21125/edulearn.2016.1379},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2016.1379},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {4-6 July, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {1912-1924}}
TY - CONF
AU - C. Queiruga AU - F.J. Díaz AU - T. Arce
TI - EQUINO: A VIDEOGAME THAT COMPLEMENTS EQUINE-ASSISTED THERAPIES AND ACTIVITIES FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES
SN - 978-84-608-8860-4/2340-1117
DO - 10.21125/edulearn.2016.1379
PY - 2016
Y1 - 4-6 July, 2016
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN16 Proceedings
SP - 1912
EP - 1924
ER -
C. Queiruga, F.J. Díaz, T. Arce (2016) EQUINO: A VIDEOGAME THAT COMPLEMENTS EQUINE-ASSISTED THERAPIES AND ACTIVITIES FOR PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES, EDULEARN16 Proceedings, pp. 1912-1924.
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