Understanding automatic control concepts by playing games

J. Sánchez, S. Dormido-Canto, G. Farías, F. Godoy, S. Dormido

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This paper presents three simulation-based games developed by the Department of Computer Science and Automatic Control at the Spanish University for Distance Education (UNED) to aid in the teaching/learning process of basic control concepts. The learning subject of the games is a PID controller, which is a control element that is commonly included in the syllabus of an introductory course on automatic control. The games are part of the results of a European Leonardo da Vinci pilot project entitled 'AutoTECH: Automation Technicians Vocational Training Repository'. The goal of this project is to develop and disseminate innovative software packages for technicians and vocational students in the automation and control field. These training packages will improve the quality of learning of these two groups of people and increase their motivation to acquire new knowledge related to their professional careers. Each of the packages contains both traditional (e.g., theory, exercises, quizzes) and web-based (e.g., interactive simulators, remote operable labs, games) learning resources.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)528-534
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
Issue number3 PART 1
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Control education
  • Dynamic simulations
  • Java
  • Learning-by-playing


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