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G ETCHUR G AME O N ! Jason A. Engerman LDT PhD Candidate Game Day 2014!

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Presentation on theme: "G ETCHUR G AME O N ! Jason A. Engerman LDT PhD Candidate Game Day 2014!"— Presentation transcript:

1 G ETCHUR G AME O N ! Jason A. Engerman LDT PhD Candidate Game Day 2014!

2 Hello Everyone





7 “I’m am here to teach, not entertain!” “Boredom is not a problem for the best students. If students tried harder or learned better they wouldn’t be bored.” “All these kids want to do is play, not learn.”

8 Since when did we decide that institutions of “Learning” were allergic to Fun?

9 “If games are ‘possibility spaces,’ then researchers need to account for how players inhabit them and the mechanisms by which meanings become interpreted from these experiences” (Squire, 2006) Jessie Schell, The Art of Game Design, 2008

10 There is no reason to think about games simply as “fun.” At the same time, there is no reason to equate learning with being “serious.” … (Gee, 2009)

11 EconU for the Masses –Part I –Part II Boys and Their Toys: Video Games and the Common Core


13 EconU

14 Part I 2 Professors for Econ 102 3 Classes (SP13-FA13) Approximately 1626 Survey Responses Part II 1 Professor for Econ 102 Revised Survey Approximately 310 Survey Responses

15 Garden Variety Thematic Analysis (Braun & Clark, 2006) –Textalyser and Textisbeautiful (General Codes)Textalyser Textisbeautiful –Parsed out Likes and Dislikes (Revised Codes) –Textalyser and Textisbeautiful (General Themes) –Take a deeper look (Refined Themes) –{notes, inquiry, bracketing, reflexive}

16 Likes Concept, interesting, clever Control, Freedom, Game Different style of teaching Relation to Economics, Realistic, Application Enjoyed and Fun! Responses “It is very helpful to me to learn about Economies. I have an interest in Econ through this EconU. It is very interesting!!!” “I really liked how EconU allowed me to bring my economics knowledge into a ‘real life’ setting. I enjoyed learning how these different concepts positively and negatively affected my campus.”

17 Dislikes Lack of instructions Difficulty and going bankrupt Unrealistic Responses “The lack of instructions about basic components of the game was very frustrating” “I disliked how easily and quickly it was to go bankrupt” “It seemed a bit unrealistic that they were 100% without any food or housing on campus”

18 “I thought it was very confusing. When the game started, people and cars are moving and it created anxiety. I had no idea what I was suppose to do. It was a fun game to play!” “Honestly, I am not very interested in the game. However, I like it because I can feel the real world so that I can practice the economic knowledge I have learned through EconU. I dislike nothing when I play EconU.”

19 “The game was really exciting and enjoyable. I love it so much. The ‘sims’ was too cute. It helps me making wise decisions. The problem is it is too hard for me at first because there is no instructions or tutorials to help me understand. The discussion was no help. Hiring a new workers (in the game) was useless for me because I do not understand the table below the game. I love it so much. Interesting.”

20 It was hard to keep the game on every turn without any economic thought and decision. However, while the game was on, it intrigued me to think economically and I eventually enjoyed that game. I am so happy for that earning all of trophies which are 10! “I like the close relationship that it had to real life situations, and I disliked the complexity of buying a really expensive building. In addition, even when i purchased it I still did not receive my trophy. It was great! I really did enjoy it.”

21 “I liked how challenging the game was. It involved more thinking then just clicking and placing buildings. It made you think back to all the concepts we have learned throughout the year to try and benefit the most. At first it took a little getting use to but other then that I liked it.”

22 “…I completely understand why it is as complex as it is though, which makes it extremely realistic and therefor educational. I also found it extremely hard to turn a profit later on in the game around turns 70-85 because of cuts in federal funding and an increase in food costs. I don't know how realistic those cuts and percentage increases would be.“

23 “It seemed to me that the demand didn't change at all (except when events happened). For example if I built a school of Liberal Arts, the demand for Liberal Arts was still the same, but the game didn't allow you to build multiple schools of a certain type.”

24 “The game ends as soon as I get bankrupt. I think I should have a chance to bring my school from debts to margins.”

25 “…give some purpose to the dorms and other non- academic buildings. The dorms should've increased the population limit. The math and arts buildings can never pay themselves off, while buildings that should cost much more (due to research equipment) make a lot more money. Also, show the actual power/energy use, and make it a point to use the facilities.”

26 “I can't figure out what many of the buildings such as the student union did. Perhaps more explicit explanations could be added for these buildings? Additionally, for all intents and purposes, the only reason I knew to put coal plants in was 1) intuition and 2) trial & error through multiple runs. More explanations of what these in-game investments actually do! ”

27 “Also, when adjusting policy sliders, it was very hit-and- miss with effects on happiness. Maybe give a preview or a rough estimate based on the adviser level. Also, I'm still not sure what the maximum and minimum land value is, since there's no chart explaining it anywhere. “ “There was times where I made choices I did not like or did not realize how they would effect me and I would dig myself a hole in the game. I wish i could just start over and restart the game from scratch.”

28 Likes Turn based system Ease of use (Aesthetics) Dislikes Limited to no guidance Turn limit Certain buildings added no value Scrolling up and down Navigating campus on screen Glitches (Firefox, stalling)

29 Enjoyable: Provoked Curiosity “Interest, concept, idea” Risk Free Environment “Game” Related to the Content

30 Guidance: Understanding “Frustration, Confused” Scaffolding “Guide, Instructions” –Game and Content –Class and Content Articulation of Learning


32 Factor Analysis Discussed implications and possibilities

33 How helpful do you feel EconU was, as an addition to your economics course? I felt that EconU was helpful in bringing microeconomics concepts “to life”. I enjoyed playing EconU more than other means of learning economics (textbooks, course lecture, exams, etc).

34 How frequently did you consider economic concepts from Econ102 when playing EconU? How helpful do you feel EconU was as an addition to your economics course?

35 This survey reports out on how helpful students perceived EconU to be to their understanding of Economics Overwhelmingly, enjoyment and helpfulness dominated their experiences.

36 Did it lead to more time on task ??? Deeper understanding of concepts??? If we knew about scores then we could talk more about the learning impact of the enjoyment factor of the game.

37 Dig into open ended responses Follow Enjoyment Collaborative learning Ask about particular elements in the game (Cultural impacts).












49 “I liked the fact that it was an entertaining way of learning”; “I like that it is a creative way to utilize economic concepts” “Lenses 2, 3 & 4” (Schell, 2008)

50 “Learners can take risks in a space where real- world consequences are lowered. ” (Gee, 2007) “It can always be reset so that I can try a lot of times to improve my performance.”

51 That is taking words beyond verbal meanings and placing them into situated meanings through experiences towards gain understanding (“VGL”, 2013). “I liked the fact that how EconU closely related to our microeconomics and learning basic of economics helps us to understand how a business is run.”

52 “The learner gets ample opportunity to operate within, but at the outer edge of, his or her resources, so that at those points things are felt as challenging but not “undoable.” (Gee, 2007) “I understood why when you went into debt, you had to start over- but I would have liked to have been able to bring myself out of debt”

53 “I wish that there had been a bit more elaborations on the instructions because a lot of the game I had to figure out on my own and I'm still not sure how exactly I got everything to work correctly.” “I disliked that there was a lack of explanations of economics concepts, either as pop-ups of "things to keep in mind" or just some general reference list of guidelines. “

54 “it was fun to play and helped me think economically about situations in the business world” “I think economics was used in making decisions on what to build and when to build” “What I liked most about Econ U is that I can have an opportunity to apply and experience what I learn in Econ class for almost reality”

55 “…Play and learning are primordial human urges. Unfortunately, we have come to take it for granted that adulthood will kill play and schools will kill learning as a human pleasure. These assumptions are particularly dangerous in the twenty-first century” (Gee, 2009)

56 Gee, J. P. (2009). Games, learning, and 21st century survival skills. Journal For Virtual Worlds Research, 2(1). Gee, J. P. (2007). What video games have to teach us about learning and literacy: Revised and Updated Edition. Macmillan. Schell, J. (2008). The Art of Game Design: A book of lenses. CRC Press. Squire, K. (2006). From content to context: Videogames as designed experience. Educational researcher, 35(8), 19-29. Video Games & Learning (Coursera, 2013). Gee Principle 13 Meaning as Action.

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