Students work with Leicestershire Police to design a new educational app for children

Tech-savvy students from De Montfort University, Leicester (DMU) have joined forces with Leicestershire Police to design a new mobile app to help educate children about crime.

As part of their final year project, third-year Computer Science student, Zeynep Kandirmaz and Computer Games Programming student, Sophie Ellis worked with Leicestershire Police to design an educational tool aiming to inform children about crime and victim rights in an engaging and interactive way.

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Working directly with the police and feedback from Leicestershire schools the students designed two separate mobile apps- one for primary school children up to the age of 11 and one for secondary school pupils up to the age of 17.

While completing games with a storyline and answering scenario-based questions, both apps use interactive characters to help educate children on victim rights in a simple, yet informative way. And following its success in Leicester schools, it is hoped the app will be rolled out more widely across the UK.

Student Zeynep Kandirmaz who worked on the app for secondary school children said: “The whole project was such an amazing opportunity. I was really nervous at first because it was my first real life project.

“We started out meeting with Leicestershire Police on a regular basis, they outlined what sort of thing they were looking for and Sophie and I had to come up with an app that incorporated everything the police wanted.

“The main aim was to provide a user-friendly app and game for children to teach them about crime and victim rights in an interactive way.”

She continued: “I started out by writing a storyline as the main concept for the app and updated the police at each stage to make sure they were happy with it.  It’s for a great purpose and I wanted to make it as interactive and as engaging as possible.

“My app works using a map guide with a story to follow, after each victim right is explained in the storyline a question pops up and students have to submit an answer before they can move on to the next part of the story.

“The best part was visiting schools to test the app, it was really rewarding to see pupils actually engaging with my work and also giving me feedback on how to improve it.

“I am so proud that it is actually going to be used in the real world to help educate children.”

Detective Chief Inspector Helen Fletcher from Leicestershire Police said: “It was a pleasure to work with these students. Their ideas were refreshing and we worked closely looking at how best to inform and engage children with the victim’s code.

"Young people need to know their rights as a victim of crime and how the victim’s code relates to them. This can be a difficult message to convey but this app really brings it to life in a way that young people can understand and fully engage with.

"There are twelve rights that everyone should know about in the Victim’s code and ensuring young people are aware of these rights is very important.”

Posted on Monday 12 December 2022

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