Design of a Mental Calculation App for Paramedic Students

  • Brendan J Hall ACU
  • Andrew Bell University of Southern Queensland
  • John Latham University of Southern Queensland
Keywords: paramedics, serious games, gamification, mathematics teaching


Paramedics need to perform drug calculations without the aid of a calculator, and meet high standards of accuracy, while in a time critical, high-pressure environment. Paramedic students, however, are not usually in the habit of maintaining their mental arithmetic skills when they first begin their course. Consequently, an MSExcel-based tool is under development that will assist students to help identify, maintain and enhance their mental arithmetic skills. In an attempt to meet the expectations of current students, the design borrows some basic elements of game design, gamification and mastery learning, and covers mathematical skills from simple arithmetic through to contextualised problem solving. This paper shows the design philosophy and needs analysis behind the app, and the methods employed to meet those needs. It also considers some novel challenges with regard to implementing the application within a course.

Author Biography

Brendan J Hall, ACU
Academic Skills Advisor, Australian Catholic University, Banyo
How to Cite
HallB. J., BellA., & LathamJ. (2018). Design of a Mental Calculation App for Paramedic Students. Journal of Academic Language and Learning, 12(1), A227-A238. Retrieved from