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Serious game for bullying prevention to prepare students socially for the transition to middle school

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 1R43HD094420-01A1
Agency Tracking Number: R43HD094420
Amount: $299,999.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: NICHD
Solicitation Number: PA17-302
Solicitation Year: 2017
Award Year: 2018
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2018-08-05
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-08-04
Small Business Information
Durham, NC 27713-2565
United States
DUNS: 046981549
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: Yes
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 (919) 677-0102
Business Contact
Phone: (919) 677-0102
Research Institution

Bullying is an all too common occurrence in our nation s schoolsResearch underscores how all involvedbulliesvictimsand bystanders are at elevated risk for negative outcomes in many aspects of a child s socialemotionaland academic lifeRecent reviews of school based programs demonstrate that social emotional
learningSELis a critical ingredient in effective bullying preventionUnfortunatelylogistical barrierse gtimecostneed for trained stafftoo often undermine schoolsabilities to implement traditional in person programming
with all studentsThis SBIR Phase project aims to apply cutting edge intelligent social tutoring game technology
to create a newevidence based serious game specifically designed to help late elementary students learn and
build the social emotional skills needed to navigate bullying situations and successfully transition to the middle
school social environmentThe end result of our Phase I and Phase II efforts will be a rigorously tested serious
game specifically designed to prevent bullying and prepare students socially for the middle school transition
through a safe virtual environment where late elementary students can learn and practice essential SE skills for
identifyingmanagingand avoiding a variety of bullying situationsIn Phase Iwe will accomplish three specific
aimsFirstwe will create a serious game prototype with input fromth andth grade studentsparentsand
educators to select the custom graphic design and storyworld and inform development of five social problem
solving scenes depicting various types of bullying situationsi ephysicalverbalrelationalcyberand
bystanderSecondwe will conduct feasibility tests withth andth grade students and educators who will review
and evaluate the prototypeAndthirdwe will create a full Phase II development and testing plan based on our
Phase I findingsOur proposed serious game bullying prevention product will meet a significant market need as
the first rigorously tested serious game for bullying prevention to prepare students socially for the difficult
transition to middle schoolImportantlythe proposed product will benefit from an established channel into the
school market as our commercialization partnerPersonalized Learning GamesInchas committed to include
the proposed game in its product lineonce fully developed and tested in Phase II Project Narrative
Bullying is alarmingly prevalent in our nation s schoolsand decades of research underscore how bullying and
peer victimization foster both shortand long term detrimental effects for all those involvedBullying in all forms
peaks in middle school and research indicates children s ability to negotiate difficult social situations and adapt
socially before the transition directly impacts the degree to which they are able to successfully navigate this
difficult transition as well as their subsequent academicsocialand behavioral adjustmentEffective schoolbased bullying prevention efforts focus on providing instruction and practice in the social emotional skills needed
to navigate various bullying situationsSerious games can lower time and cost barriers schools face in
implementing bulling prevention programming while also offering an inherently engaging and safe platform
students to learn and practice essential social emotional skillsThe end goal of the proposed Phase I SBIR is
to create and test a prototype serious game for bullying prevention specifically designed to help prepareth andth grade students for the pivotal transition to middle school

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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