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Terms Of Reference

Title: e-Learning with the GameBoy Advance

By Ashley Bennett

URL: www.CreateUK.co.uk/gba


I hope to create a new method of content delivery to the classroom using devices already found in the average home. I will focus this development towards the Nintendo GameBoy Advance (GBA), delivering school content to owners. This will be for a the purpose of aiding learning and understanding at Key-Stage 2 level. This could include:

  • Reading teacher handouts
  • Watching animations and videos
  • Listening to sound clips
  • Having a guide when moving outside of the classroom
  • Taking part in virtual practical experiments


  • A working Alpha showing at least one learning type running on the GBA hardware, along with a ROM file for use with emulators (for reviewing on PC hardware.)
  • Possibly some promotional material for the software, such as a website, CD-ROM or video.
  • A critical look at interface design in handheld games.
  • Look at current technology and its use in schools.
  • Try and get some industry and development community opinions on the project.

Relationship To The Course

  • Using knowledge learnt from modules relating to programming, (such as Introduction to Java, and later this year, Introduction to C++)
  • Using skills from modules promoting object oriented programming, including Advanced Scripting and Programming for Entertainment Systems this year.
  • Using knowledge gained from the Multimedia Workshop modules dealing with various media types, including audio and video.
  • Using lessons learnt from the Teaching & Learning and Human-Computer Interaction modules in constructing the content.
  • Using my own knowledge of the computer and video games market, as well as any learnt on modules such as Multimedia Entertainment Systems this year.
  • Using my own knowledge of the media business including the movies and music industries, as well as any learnt on modules such as Media Business Systems, Media Industry and New Media Practices this year.

I feel that this project critically examines the way in which we approach content delivery in this evolving information age. I will attempt to show through this production and the accompanying report that by utilising untapped resources that people will already have in their homes, a unique message can be put across and a new audience / market reached.

Further, I intend to make it clear that owners of devices, (where 'owners' means manufacturers / developers etc. of both hardware and software, broadcasting companies and more) that can be used for delivery of this sort of content are harming the consumer by restricting what can be released on them. Nintendo in particular is incredibly protective of its hardware.

What This Involves (Resources / Constraints)

  • Learning to program in C / C++
  • Learning the specifics of GBA development
  • Learning about various audio / video codecs, how they work, and how to port them to the GBA architecture, if possible
  • Finding out about the target audience, market share and demographics
  • Finding out what is taught to children and how it is currently done at Key Stage 2
  • Create an effective 'business plan' or cultural context for the project
  • Develop a front end to the software
  • Develop a lesson for the GBA as a demo

Schedule Of Activities

  • Have a good grasp of C / C++ by November.
  • Have a good idea of GBA programming specifics in November.
  • Have some form of working article on the GBA in December.
  • Continue GBA development, produce advertising media and the critical examination towards deadline.

Bibliography (And Resources To Use)


I am aiming for a First for my degree, so I am submitting this proposal with that in mind. If at any stage a tutor feels that this project will not reach that target, I would like to be told in order to rethink my direction.

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Project Home

Project Proposal

Project Progress

Project Notes



Updated 02.05.05

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What's New?:
03/05/04: More Flash demos and new ROMs on downloads page.
19/04/04: More Flash demos and a new ROM on downloads page.
14/04/04: Updated Flash demo and a new written paper on downloads page.
23/03/04: Added a Flash demo and written papers to downloads page.
06/03/04: Added screenshots of Flash demos in progress to downloads page.
29/02/04: Had some publicity on GBADevr's and GBADev.

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