Exploring Emotion Representation to Support Dialogue in Police Training on Child Interviewing

Margoudi, Maria; Hart, Jennefer; Adams, Anne and Oliveira, Manuel (2016). Exploring Emotion Representation to Support Dialogue in Police Training on Child Interviewing. In: Serious Games JCSG 2016, Lecture Notes in Computer Science 9894, Springer, pp. 73–86.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-45841-0_7


Police officers when dealing with interviewing children have to cope with a complex set of emotions from a vulnerable witness. Triggers for recognising those emotions and how to build rapport are often the basis of learning exercises. However, current training pulls together the full complexity of emotions during role-playing which can be over-whelming and reduce appropriate learning focus. Interestingly a serious game’s interface can provide valuable training not because it represents full complex, multimedia interactions but because it can restrict emotional complexity and increase focus during the interactions on key factors for emotional recognition. The focus of this paper is to report on a specific aspect that was explored during the development of a serious game that aims to address the current police-training needs of child interviewing techniques, where the recognition of emotions plays an important role in understanding how to build rapport with children. The review of literature reveals that emotion recognition, through facial expressions, can contribute significantly to the perceived quality of communication. For this study an ‘emotions map’ was created and tested by 41 participants to be used in the development of a targeted interface design to support the different levels of emotion recognition. The emotions identified were validated with a 70 % agreement across experts and non-experts highlighting the innate role of emotion recognition. A discussion is made around the role of emotions and game-based systems to support their identification for work-based training. As part of the graphical development of the Child Interview Stimulator (CIS) we examined different levels of emotional recognition that can be used to support the in-game graphical representation of a child’s response during a police interview.

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