The presence of Serious Games (SGs) in the medical educational field is spreading due to their beneficial results in terms of learning outcomes and user' engagement. The effectiveness of these tools for physical therapy students is, however, still to be proven and prototypes for this user target are lacking. We adopted a user-centered design (UCD) approach to develop and validate a SG on dual task motor and cognitive rehabilitation for junior physical therapists training. The SG development and validation consisted in two phases: a design-evaluation-redesign phase with two groups of junior and senior physiotherapists (group 1, N = 10; group 2, N = 28), and the SG prototype testing phase comparing outcomes of junior physiotherapists in lab (N = 20) and physical therapy students in real context (N = 23). Usability, motivation, flow state, affective engagement and learning were tested. Results showed a high usability of the tool together with good levels of engagement in all groups. Interestingly, we observed a decrease in physiotherapists' negative affect and an increment of students' positive affect after experiencing the prototype. The adoption of the UCD for the validation of a SG on neurorehabilitation allowed the development of a usable and engaging prototype. Future research on SG topics should include a rehabilitation paradigm in their content.
- User-centered design
- serious game