As some of you may know I’m studying a Masters in Technology in Learning and have been focusing on Serious Games. I wanted to share my project with the community! I built a Serious Game using a platform called ThinkingWorlds to showcase the pedagogies in games and to investigate how teacher attitudes and perceptions changed before and after playing a game based learning serious game.
If you are interested you can play the serious game itself, PC only I’m afraid. Instructions for playing can be found here: http://portaldust.com/seriousgames/installation/
The serious game was designed using a role-playing strategy to allow the user to become embodied in a virtual environment and identify with objects and characters. The player assumes the role of a new teacher on the first day of school and the principal “Principal Daily” assigns “Mr. Rooney” (the player) tasks and challenges that he must complete before the day is over. At the end of each level, the player is given information on the pedagogy embedded in the game level and when all tasks are finished, “Principal Daily” requests a short reflective report on the player’s experience.
The objective of the learning game was to provide a tailored contextual experience in a school environment that would have a positive affect on preconceptions, and change negative attitudes towards the role of serious games in the classroom. The learning game was designed to allow teachers to experience a range of educational activities, each built upon a clear and established pedagogy.
I conducted a literature review to examine the pedagogies applicable to games that resulted in five prominent theorists being chosen as the basis for designing the technology enhanced learning game artifact.
Four learning game levels were developed with activities to match a specific learning theory. The learning game activities were designed around recommendations found in the literature.
If you do play the learning game, I’de be interested in your feedback as I will be expanding the project further this year.
Samantha Kotey is the editor for AvatarGeneration and has a background in educational technology and virtual worlds. A mom of two, she is passionate about all things related to toys and technology.