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Gaming in Education Voices of Spoon River School of Learning Sciences. A Case Study of the Development of an Educational Interactive Fiction Game by Instructional Game Students. Evaluation of an Educational Interactive Fiction Game. Design of a Multi-User Game for Learning Science Students.

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Gaming in EducationVoices of Spoon RiverSchool of Learning Sciences

A Case Study of the Development of an Educational Interactive Fiction Game by Instructional Game Students

Evaluation of an Educational Interactive Fiction Game

Design of a Multi-User Game for Learning Science Students

Department of Instructional Technology

Utah State University

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Voices of Spoon River

  • Interpreter - http://nickm.com/if/faq.html

    • Windows - Frotz 2002

    • OS X - Zoom

  • Game - http://it.usu.edu/cle/VOSR_r1.0.z5

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Voices of Spoon River

A Case Study of the Development of an Educational Interactive Fiction Game by Instructional Game Students

S.M. Duncan & Brett Shelton, Ph.D.

Department of Instructional Technology

Utah State University

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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The VOSR Team

  • Jared Bernotski

  • Tom Caswell

  • Marie Duncan

  • Marion Jensen

  • Jennifer Jorgensen

  • Jon Scoresby

  • Tim Stowell

  • Brett Shelton (advisor)

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Instructional Games Class at USU

  • The emerging nature of the field

  • Elements of an effective instructional game

  • The qualities of “good” instructional design within a gaming environment

  • http://itoutreach.ed.usu.edu/~bshelton/courses/instgames/index.htm

  • Coming soon - most materials via http://ocw.usu.edu

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Spoon River Anthology - The Book

Courtesy Ms. Mudd from Springfield, Illinois http://lawrence.springfield.k12.il.us/SpoonRiverAnthology/SpoonRiverAnthology.html

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Spoon River Anthology - Benefits

  • Out of copyright

    • http://www.bartleby.com/84/

  • Non-linear

  • 9th grade English

  • Desired objectives

    • reading comprehension, poetry literary device

  • Unexpected(?) outcomes

    • problem solving, orienteering, confidence

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Why Interactive Fiction?

  • Blends entertainment and education

  • Allows for narrative, interaction (NPCs, variety of actions and locations), rich description

  • Text-based format

    • Consistent with English learning objectives

    • Allows for similar experience as the traditional book

    • (http://www.ifarchive.org/ , IF wiki: http://www.ifwiki.org/ , http://nickm.com/ , http://emshort.home.mindspring.com/ , http://www.brasslantern.org/)

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Instructional Technologists as Game Designers

  • Combines their experience with traditional instructional design theory with new exposure to game theory

  • Utilizes hybrid theory of “alignment”

    • Ensures all game activity is aligned with learning objectives

  • Become mini-content experts

    • English instruction

    • Spoon River Anthology

    • Computer science and game development

    • http://it.usu.edu/cle/CLE_IF_learning.html

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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A Few of Group B’s Instructional Goals

  • Learners will identify the poetic device of repetition

  • Learners will understand the use of symbolism in poetry

  • Learners will read and comprehend poetry

  • Learners will use a variety of problem solving techniques

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Activity-Goal Alignment

Game-like activities should be aligned with the instructional goals of the game

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Clusters

  • Sibley’s Secret (Mrs. Sibley & Editor Whedon)

  • Hamblin’s Article (Carl Hamblin & Editor Whedon)

  • Cooney’s Contentment (Cooney Potter & Fiddler Jones)

  • The McGees (Fletcher McGee & Ollie McGee)

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Design & Development Process

  • Cluster-based activity within design/development groups combines:

    • Characters

    • Locations

    • Artifacts

    • Resolutions

    • Game-related activities

    • Learning objectives

  • Iterative testing

  • Integration of game/code modules

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Important Lessons Learned

  • Whole-game -> Clusters

  • Chaos -> Organized Readme’s

    • Things that didn’t work

    • Wordings/situations lacking clarity

    • Difficulty level of resolution

    • Suggested Improvements

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Basic Process (part 1)

  • Read Spoon River Anthology

  • Identified instructional goals

  • Identified a game premise

  • Identified character relationships

  • Developed game challenges that:

    • Utilized existing character relationships

    • Met instructional goals

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Basic Process (part 2)

  • Developed and tested each cluster independently

  • Combined and tested intra-group clusters

  • Combined and tested group clusters

  • Departmental kick-off

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Next steps…

  • Research the game in-use with 9th grade English students

    • Motivation and activity-goal alignment

    • Expected and unexpected learning outcomes

  • Making VOSR accessible to those with disabilities

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Voices of Spoon River

Evaluation of an Educational Interactive Fiction Game

S.M. Duncan, Jon Scoresby & Brett Shelton, Ph.D.

Department of Instructional Technology

Utah State University

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Current Questions

  • Were the learning objectives achieved and was the game motivating to play? If yes, in what ways? If no, why not?

  • What are the motivational impacts of unit discussion and unit game play?

  • Was the motivation within the game truly gender-neutral as the game was designed?

  • What are the instructional benefits of using VOSR during an instructional unit on SRA?

  • What is the game environment overhead in VOSR?

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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ARCS

Attention

Relevance

Confidence

Satisfaction

Keller, J.M. (1988, April). Tools for enhancing and assessing learner motivation. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the National Society of Performance and Instruction, Washington, D.C.

CPU

Challenge

Proclivity

Uncertainty

Shelton, B. E., & Wiley, D. (2006, April 7-11). Instructional designers take all the fun out of games: Rethinking elements of engagement for designing instructional games. Paper presented at the American Educational Research Association (AERA) 2006, San Francisco.

Motivation Measures

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Anticipated Sample

  • Five 9th grade English classes, each with about 32 students (≈160 total subjects)

  • Classes last 50 minutes

  • Two treatment-groups

    • Gameplay followed by discussion (G)

    • Discussion followed by gameplay (D)

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Procedure (1)

  • Consent & assent forms sent out and collected the week prior

  • Classes randomly assigned a treatment group

  • Students complete pre-unit surveys

  • Classes complete their group’s first intervention

  • Students complete intervention specific surveys

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Procedure (2)

  • Classes complete the second intervention

  • Students complete a unit test

  • Initial data analysis to identify a specific pool of students to further analyze

  • One-on-one interviews

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Procedures/Analysis Diagram

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Expectations & Implications

  • Effective classroom implementations

  • As related to instructionally designed games, a glimpse of potential:

    • Instructional benefits

    • Downsides

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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School of Learning Sciences

Design of a Multi-User Game for Learning Science Students

S.M. Duncan, Tim Stowell, Bobbe Allen & Brett Shelton, Ph.D.

Department of Instructional Technology

Utah State University

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Rafael’s School of Athens

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Types of Interactions

  • Challenge (i.e. goal/mission)

  • Non-directed exploration

  • Creation or modification of Non-Player Characters (NPCs)

  • Design and creation of new Challenges

  • Creation or modification of the game environment

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Platform Requirements

  • Multi-User Environment

  • Supports

    • Ambiguous (i.e. MUD/MOO) interactions

    • Game-like interactions

  • Windows, OS X, Linux support

  • Relative ease of development & expansion (open)

  • Cost (lack thereof)

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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I.F. vs. Visual

  • Interactive Fiction

    • Fast and easy to develop and modify

    • Platform independent (e.g. Windows, Mac, Palmpilot, etc.)

    • Machine independent (e.g. don’t need the latest greatest graphics card)

    • Can initially, be very intimidating to players

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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I.F. vs. Visual

  • Visual

    • Daunting to develop and modify

    • Might be ported to multiple platforms

    • Machine dependent (e.g. performance will be effected by graphics card)

    • Initially welcoming to players

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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Unreal Engine/Tournament mod ($$)

Power Render 6 - Personal Edition (W)

Active Worlds (W)

Multiverse.net (W)

Orge 3D (S.P.)

Crystal Space (B.R.)

Quake III

$$ - Financial Barriers

W - Windows only

S.P. - Single player only

B.R. - Bad reviews

Platforms Reviewed

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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The Creative Learning Environments Lab at USU…

  • Instructional simulations

  • Educational games

  • New media design and experiences

  • Augmented reality and education

  • Learning Sciences

  • Data visualization theory and practice

  • Interactive immersive learning environments.

http://it.usu.edu/cle/

Philadelphia Area Educational Technology Conference


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