Evaluating an E-Learning Application to Protect Vulnerable Users From Cyberbullying

Evaluating an E-Learning Application to Protect Vulnerable Users From Cyberbullying

Marian McDonnell (Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art Design and Technology, Ireland), Hannah O'Sheehan (Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art Design and Technology, Ireland) and Irene Connolly (Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art Design and Technology, Ireland)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9069-9.ch021

Abstract

This research project evaluates Let's Be Safe, an e-learning application. This application aims to educate young adults with intellectual disability about cyberbullying—an issue prevalent among this population—and cybersafety. Twenty-two individuals with mild to moderate intellectual disability took part in the research. The study employed a mixed-methods design including observational and inquiry methods of usability evaluation as well as focus groups. The evaluation investigated the relationships between perceived aesthetics, emotional response, and usability for the application. The focus group gathered information from the participants regarding their knowledge and experience of cyberbullying and cybersafety. The analyses found no significant relationships between aesthetics, emotional response, and usability for this user group. However, the research gathered data, which will contribute to the development of Let's Be Safe. The findings of the focus group revealed that cyberbullying is an issue among this population.
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Introduction

Overview

Despite the abundance of literature in the area of human-computer interaction (HCI), there is limited HCI research about users with intellectual disability (ID). This chapter evaluates Let's Be Safe, an eLearning application which aims to educate young adults with intellectual disability about cyberbullying - an issue prevalent among this population - and cybersafety. Twenty-two individuals with mild to moderate intellectual disability took part in the research. The study employed a mixed-methods design including observational and inquiry methods of usability evaluation. The evaluation investigated the relationships between perceived aesthetics, emotional response and usability for the application. The analyses found no significant relationships between aesthetics, emotional response and usability for this user group. However, the research gathered data, which will contribute to the development of Let's Be Safe. Users wanted the developers to include more games and video modelling in the future iterations of the application. More emoticons, appropriate cartoons and age appropriate photographic images will be incorporated into the next version of Let’s Be Safe. The findings also highlight the significance of further research in the area of HCI for users with ID and the importance of research into the area of cyberbullying among this same population. The research also aims to explore the lived experiences of individuals within this population, in relation to cyberbullying and cybersafety. The findings aim to contribute to the development of the Let’s Be Safe eLearning application. Additionally, this research will add to the existing literature within the area of instructional and educational technologies, as well as cybersafety and cyberbullying, for the ID population

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