A Serious Game concerning Triage with use of an Intelligent Tutoring System

title: A Serious Game concerning Triage with use of an Intelligent Tutoring System
author: M.M.Hendriks
published in: June 2008
appeared as: Master of Science thesis
Man-machine interaction group
Delft University of Technology
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In a Mass Casualty Incident, medical personnel aren't able to help all the victims in a disaster area at once. Therefore, triage is performed to classify the casualties into groups of urgency. In the Netherlands, a new triage procedure is going to be introduced in the beginning of 2009. The triage system requires medical workers to re-learn and train the reasoning patterns of the new methodology. This MSc thesis will describe the creation of a serious game that will help medical workers train the triage procedure. In order to track and respond to the user's actions in the game an Intelligent Tutoring System (ITS) will be implemented that is specifically designed for communicating with the game and the underlying game engine.
The global ITS framework is used for three different observation and manipulation functions: the monitoring of the player's movement, the providing of feedback on the user's actions concerning triage and the automatic creation of a disaster scenario. This last function will generate a disaster area at random for the player to search victims in. The main focus of this project is the creation of an instructional tool for learning triage and the implementation of a placement algorithm for the automated creation of a disaster area.
The complete application will be created with help from the Valve Source engine. This engine provides users the necessary functionality to create a digital game for PC. With this basic functionality already implemented, focus can be more towards the actual creation of the framework and game content.
Expert knowledge regarding triage procedures, forms of evaluation and victim data are provided by the Nederlands Instituut Fysieke Veiligheid (NIFV). Experts at this institute were also willing to participate in a small preliminary test to get a first opinion of the implemented game. These participants were excited about the created pilot and the feedback it provided. Although this was only a preliminary test, further development in this type of training and learning will be very useful for all kinds of relevant topics in disaster management.

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