The study aims to investigate the effects of the usability test on the interface design and operating procedures of the digital game-based application in learning physics. Also the study summarizes users’ expectations and experiences of the digital game-based application in learning physics. In the final analysis, the study will give recommendations of the interface improvement to the developers for helping learners to enjoy more decent learning effect.
The study took digital game-based applications of the 3D virtual laboratory project (Shyu & Chou, 2012) as research tools. The subjects were three experts in the field of the usability and thirty students who receive the secondary education and senior secondary education in Taiwan. The subjects took the usability test and filled in the questionnaire, also they finished the interview for compiling statistics and investigating results. The researcher conducted the heuristic evaluation and the usability tasks, giving interview to the subjects before and after the usability test as well. Last, the expectations, experiences and recommendations of digital game-based application in learning physics would be investigated and analyzed to refine the interface design and operating procedures of the digital game-based application in learning physics.
The conclusions of this study were summarized in the following:
1.The users took both convinced and unconvinced points of view toward the digital game-based application in learning physics. In view of this, there is a need for the researchers and the developers to ruminate that whether the students should take the application to learn or not since the counter-effect may be occurred.
2.The designers of digital game-based application must consider the differences between the system and the perception of the users, also the rumination toward the persistence of learning motivations on digital game-based application in learning physics should be taken as well.
3.There is a need for the refinements of 3D virtual laboratory’s digital game-based application in learning physics, including teaching objectives, the initiatively explanation on system to the operation of game, the timely and appropriate provision of tips and feedbacks, familiar languages and concepts which are presented in text and graphics to the users, proper assistances when the users encounter difficulties. Furthermore, the developers should reduce system errors, highlighting the important images and contents, providing a simple operating procedure, enabling the users to control the progress of the game at their pleasure, providing intuitive operation design, and supporting various resolutions on system.