A Synthetic Task Environment for Training and Skills Assessment Research (STETSAR)

Period of Performance: 10/31/2006 - 07/31/2007


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Stottler Henke Associates
1650 South Amphlett Boulevard, Suite 300
San Mateo, CA 94402
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Central Florida
4000 Central Florida Boulevard
Orlando, FL 32816
Institution POC


Game-based synthetic task environments are receiving increased attention as a mechanism for delivering highly effective training. However, these systems are very expensive to create, and there is little empirical research regarding their efficacy for specific training objectives. Stottler Henke Associates Inc., together with our academic partner the University of Central Florida (UCF) and our sub-contractor BreakAway, Ltd. propose to develop a tool (STETSAR) to support empirical research into the effectiveness of gaming technology for training and skills assessment. By integrating Stottler Henke's rapid authoring intelligent tutoring system technology into BreakAway's MOSBY gaming platform, STETSAR will enable researchers to rapidly construct many variants of a synthetic task environment to study the relationships between game characteristics and their efficacy for specific training objectives. STETSAR will support single-player and multi-player games, and the option to provide advice to the trainee(s) during play and/or after action review. STETSAR will also facilitate research by automatically assessing trainee performance. During Phase I we will design STETSAR and construct a limited prototype to demonstrate the feasibility of our approach. UCF will provide design requirements, define an experimental design for a series of empirical studies, and perform a small-scale pilot study using the prototype.