Skip Navigation
OU Public Affairs WebsiteThe University of OklahomaPublic Affairs

OU Begins Final Testing of MACBETH: A “Serious Video Game” Developed to Train Future Intelligence Analysts and Mitigate Cognitive Bias

Media Note:  Reporters are invited to experience firsthand how a serious video game works that is designed to train intelligence analysts about biases.  If you are interested in participating in the testing, please contact Norah Dunbar at 405-325-1588 or ndunbar@ou.edu.  A pre-test is required to participate.

Norman, Okla.—A University of Oklahoma team will begin testing MACBETH, an educational or “serious video game” they developed to train intelligence analysts and measure their proficiency in recognizing and mitigating their cognitive biases.  The OU team was one of six teams selected to create a video game for the Air Force Research Laboratory in support of the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity. 

Norah Dunbar, associate professor in the OU Department of Communication and the Center for Applied Social Research, says the team modeled MACBETH after the game “Clue” because it is familiar to most people.  With MACBETH, players spent less time learning the game and more time solving the problem.  Like Clue, MACBETH gives player(s) a group of suspects to choose from and clues that help the player decide who has committed the crime.  Mentors guide a player by providing insight as to what a player did wrong.

“The OU team focused on creating a video game that was engaging while training a player to recognize a pattern of thinking and correct it when it led to the wrong outcome.  This type of reasoning is required in other professions, such as the medical field,” says Dunbar.  “For example, a physician may make a diagnosis based on what he or she knows, but after looking at the symptoms closely may decide to change the diagnosis based on the information.  Dunbar noted that the OU video game could be adapted to train physicians or law enforcement professionals.

With MACBETH, OU ran four different tests in the laboratory to see if the training resonated with the players or not.  The volunteers who played the video game retained more information than those who watched an instructional video.  A total of 2,000 subjects were tested both at OU and by Judee Burgoon’s team at the University of Arizona.  The OU team included Dunbar; Scott Wilson, OU K20 Center; Matthew Jensen, Michael F. Price College of Business; Claude Miller, OU Department of Communication; and a dozen other scientists.    

 2014  |  2013  |  2012  |  2011

April 2015

OU Commencement to Feature Cornell University President-Elect, Photo Highlights of Graduating Class and Music

Five OU Faculty Named Presidential Teaching Fellows in Joe C. and Carole Kerr McClendon Honors College

University of Oklahoma Professor, OU Alumna Receive Apple Distinguished Educator Awards 

OU Alumnus Named Special Assistant to the Vice President for the University Community

OU Designated Big 12 Conference Champion in EPA’s College and University Green Power Challenge

OU President David L. Boren Announces $30 Million in Gifts to Name College of Engineering and Establish New School of Biomedical Engineering

OU and Nanowave Technologies Inc. Enter into Research Agreement

Four OU Students Receive Boren Awards for International Study

2014-2015 OU President's Trophy Winners Announced

OU Engineering Professors among Nation's Best 'Young Investigators'

Oklahoma Water Survey Plans Water Reuse Workshops

OU Students to Serve Hispanic Communities During "Big Event" Day of Community Service

OU’s Donald W. Reynolds Performing Arts Center on List of Most Beautiful Conservatories, Schools of Music

Honorary Degree Recipients to be Honored at OU Commencement Friday, May 8

April 17 Dedication Ceremony Scheduled for Hester Hall, Home of OU College of International Studies

Cornell University President-Elect Elizabeth Garrett to Deliver OU's 2015 Commencement Address

Gary England to Lead New Severe Weather Series Featured on OU's Janux Platform

Two OU Students Receive Goldwater Honors

OU Physicists First to Create New Molecule with Record-Setting Dipole Moment

OU Makes History with Record-Setting Number of Freshman National Merit Scholars

For requests for past releases, please contact OU Public Affairs at (405) 325-1701 or publicaffairs@ou.edu.