Serious-Minded Games
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Serious-Minded Games
Games with a purpose, and how they get created
Curated by Jim Lerman
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Research: Games That Require Strategic Thinking Offer Important Benefits ~ GamePolitics

Research: Games That Require Strategic Thinking Offer Important Benefits ~ GamePolitics | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

"New research from the Netherlands finds that young people who play games that require fast-paced strategic thinking and planning may improve learning, health and social skills, and strengthen cognitive abilities including problem solving, reasoning, memory and perception. Researchers say that these benefits can occur even when a game contains violent content. The research from the Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands was recently published in the journal, American Psychologist."

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New Learning Times : Article Computer Games for Urban Planning and Civic Thinking

New Learning Times : Article Computer Games for Urban Planning and Civic Thinking | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
The epistemic game Urban Science enables students to acquire the knowledge, skills, and values for urban planning and civic thinking.
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REVIEW: Going to Town on SimCityEDU (EdSurge News)

REVIEW: Going to Town on SimCityEDU (EdSurge News) | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Tony Wan


"One of my favorite parts of playing SimCity as a teenager was inviting Godzilla and UFOs to unleash chaos on my city.


"Alas, such memorable features are not available in SimCityEDU: Pollution Challenge, an adaptation of SimCity 5 designed specifically for schools and classrooms. Licenses, which range from $3 to $20 per user, are now available through resellers.


"The game was developed by GlassLab, a game studio within the Institute of Play that received $10.3 million from the Gates Foundation and MacArthur Foundation in June 2012. SimCityEDU is the first of six games that GlassLab will develop to “leverage digital games as powerful, data-rich learning and formative assessment environments,” and was built in partnership with Electronic Arts, Educational Testing Service, Pearson, and the Entertainment Software Association."

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Jeffrey Earp's curator insight, November 28, 2013 3:57 AM

Will be interesting to see emerging research data on this flagship repurposing effort

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Can Technology Drive Behaviour Change? - Considered_

Can Technology Drive Behaviour Change? - Considered_ | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Steven Johnson


"On the 16th November 2013, I delivered a presentation at a Drinkaware conference designed to answer the question ‘Can Technology Drive Behaviour Change?’. What follows is a transcription of the talk along with the images of the slides at appropriate points."


Via NikolaosKourakos, Jim Lerman
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Gamification Video Guide (90 videos)

Gamification Video Guide (90 videos) | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
The Beginner's Guide to Gamification is a Gamification Video Series created by Regular Stanford Lecturer and creator of the gamification framework Octalysis


by Yukai Chou


"I’ve seen quite a few Gamification Video Courses online these days, but all the ones I have seen are extremely boring AND they lack in deepness. A few of them spread the net very wide and people understand gamification better but not how to apply it.


"This is my attempt (and hobby) of making an entertainment video lecturer course, while packing in some advanced gamification techniques, concepts, and examples. The reason why I call it the “Beginner’s Guide” to Gamification, even though it is more advanced than many “expert certification” courses, is because I believe we are all still students in this vast field of Gamification. The industry is just at its beginning, and 10 years later, we would be amazed about how little we knew right now. My goal is to be the pioneer of beginner’s and share all the stuff I have learned!"

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How to Avoid Five Common Design Errors for Serious Games | Game On! Learning

How to Avoid Five Common Design Errors for Serious Games | Game On! Learning | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Bryan Austin


"It’s surprisingly difficult to build the right simulation components of a serious game, and it’s surprisingly easy to get it wrong (Foshay 2006).  Look for these common serious game design errors, and learn to recognize designs that avoid them:"

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Irene Quirós Ruiz's curator insight, November 24, 2013 4:01 PM

Errores comunes en la gamificación

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Avokiddo Emotions - Educational Games for kids

Avokiddo Emotions - Educational Games for kids | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

"Give your children a serious case of the giggles when you introduce them to a zany zebra, shy sheep and jolly giraffe. Your children will discover these emotions and more by dressing up, feeding, sharing toys and interacting with their new-found digital friends using over 100 uniquely themed props in this endless play funhouse."

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Beyond Minecraft: Games That Inspire Building and Exploration

Beyond Minecraft: Games That Inspire Building and Exploration | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
The success and popularity of Minecraft in and out of classrooms is no surprise.

Via Stacey Py Flynn, Jim Lerman
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Video Games that Foster Global Empathy: Real Lives and Quandary

Video Games that Foster Global Empathy: Real Lives and Quandary | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Rukmini Banerjee


"Real Lives is a simulation game developed by Bob Runyan and Ashoka Fellow Parag Mankeekar that allows players to inhabit the lives of individuals around the world. This game enables us to perceive the world through the eyes of another person within a context that is considerably different from our own and to undergo experiences that this individual is likely to have within his or her social setting, based on statistically accurate realities and events.


"Through the different characters and simulations that comprise Real Lives, players can experience what life could be like for a person living in another country in a wide variety of areas including education, employment, marriage, family, diseases, and natural disasters. As the game progresses, the character ages, and the game uses static graphics to convey information about the life of a character. Not only does the software use real-world data to determine the probability of events in the lives of the various characters, but all information regarding the country’s history, culture, and socio-economic conditions is also gathered from reliable Internet sources, to which links are provided within the game.


"Real Lives strives to foster and hone “the cognitive, affective, and communicative components of global empathy.” Through the simulations and the information provided, players are encouraged to make decisions or act instinctively and are also able to see what the consequences of such actions or decisions might be."

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Games Based Learning Theory and Practice by Paul Ladley

Games Based Learning Theory and Practice by Paul Ladley | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

"Much has been discussed about computer games and their impact on young people. A lot of the media has focused how games are turning our young people into violent hooligans. But more recently, there has been shift in opinions. While there isn’t a universal cry of “games are good”, there is a general acceptance that games might have a place in education.


"Michael Gove seems to have taken notice, “Games and interactive software can help pupils acquire complicated skills and rigorous knowledge in an engaging and enjoyable way … Britain has an incredibly strong games industry, with vast potential to engage with education both in this country and all over the world. We’re already seeing these technologies being used in imaginative ways.”


"Beyond the buzz, what are the merits to the gamification of education? GBL can achieve some learning outcomes not easily achievable with traditional teaching approaches. Simulations, in particular, can support Learn by Doing and Learn by Being. Learn by Doing is focused on skills, actions, activity, engagement, team working and so on. Learn by Being is focused on knowledge such as understanding the environment, values, attitudes, society, diversity, culture and so on."

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Utilizing virtual worlds for game based learning: Grafica, a 3D educational game in Second Life

My presentation in ICALT Conference 2012 - Rome Utilizing virtual worlds for game based learning: Grafica, a 3D educational game in Second Life

Via Lia Terzidou
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games-based-learning blog: 20 Computer Free Games Based Learning and Gamification Resources

games-based-learning blog: 20 Computer Free Games Based Learning and Gamification Resources | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
"We talk a lot about games based learning and gamification based on or around computers and technology in some way.  But of course, games don’t have to be computer based and offline games and play can be extraordinarily powerful learning tools as well.  Here is a list of 20 computer free game resources to teach a variety of age groups a variety of things.  A lot of these are from parents, but will act as great inspiration to teachers.  Please post any ideas you have or any tried and tested games you have used with your children or students in the comments."

Via David W. Deeds, Lia Terzidou
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David W. Deeds's curator insight, August 8, 2013 3:03 PM

Now this will come in handy.

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Text Adventure Games and Interactive History: Educational Questing ~ Text Adventures Blog

Text Adventure Games and Interactive History: Educational Questing ~ Text Adventures Blog | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Tara Fickle


"That’s why I don’t think of Inside as just an educational game – what Tom Cole aptly dubbed “a game with an educational skin” – but more like an interactive museum. It’s based almost exclusively in historical fact; I’ve changed most of the names, but the vast majority of the situations that players encounter – from cosmetic surgery to the Rescue of the Lost Battalion to the Tule Lake Uprising - are documented in historical accounts and court cases. Much of the game’s content is also adapted from novels written by internees like John Okadaand Hiroshi Nakamura; in those cases, it’s not about whether the events really happened or not, but about understanding what and why those authors would choose to fictionalize – and about exposing their novel literary styles to the larger audience that they so greatly deserve.


"But ultimately, I have a more wide-ranging goal: that Quest (the software which I used to design Inside, generously made available by the folks at textadventures.co.uk) will be integrated into all sorts of classrooms, especially in Literature and History courses. Because interactive text games have an incredible amount of potential as educational resources, a potential which has gone largely untapped. As an instructor of English at UCLA, one of the biggest difficulties I and my fellow teachers face is getting undergraduates to think about literature as something to be engaged with, not just passively read. When you are trying to get a group of 18 year olds to read Shakespeare or Chaucer, and especially when you’re asking them to write an essay about these canonical authors, you often immediately sense the trepidation and anxiety: “What do I, a lowly undergrad, have to say about a famous text that’s been written about five million times before? Everything’s already been said!”

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New Learning Times : ARIS

New Learning Times : ARIS | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Ching-Fu Lan


"ARIS (Augmented Reality and Interactive Storytelling) is an open-source platform that enables users to create location-based mobile games and interactive stories. With mobile devices, GPS technology, or QR codes, ARIS players can navigate in augmented reality worlds where virtual characters and objects are linked to physical places and facilitate gaming and learning activities. Its game editor allows educators to create interactive learning activities on various topics and is useful for students to learn basic game design concepts such as goals, rules, and challenges."

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Achievement Unlocked: Digital Games as a Key for Learning ~ BrightBytes and co.lab

"This whitepaper is a collaboration between

BrightBytes Labs and co.lab and is written for

PK-12 parents, guardians, family members, and

educators interested in learning more about the

potential of digital games for learning, the key

criteria that can inform game selections, and the

benefits of effective school-startup partnerships."

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Where Film Marries Video Game ~ NY Times

Where Film Marries Video Game ~ NY Times | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Harold Goldberg


"While filming a documentary about divisive oil refinery ventures in the subzero cold of Fort McMurray, Alberta, the director David Dufresne said he wasn’t considering only pollution in that Canadian boomtown or the vast tar sands beneath its frozen ground. He was also thinking deeply about technology, about making a new kind of hybrid media, a docugame.


"Interactive documentaries have been widely available since the CD-ROM boom of the 1990s. Yet while they have become a genre unto themselves, few have included a game component. With “Fort McMoney,” a free program released online this week, Mr. Dufresne has tried to change that."

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Octalysis: Complete Gamification Framework - Yu-kai Chou

Octalysis: Complete Gamification Framework - Yu-kai Chou | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
The internationally well-known Gamification Framework Octalysis converts any campaign into actionable steps by breaking down motivation into 8 Core Drives.
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Gamification User Types 2.0 | Andrzej's Blog

Gamification User Types 2.0 | Andrzej's Blog | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
I mentioned that I was trying to simplify and improve my gamification user types. Version 2 is just that and a little more.

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The Five Questions to Ask When Evaluating A Serious Game | Game On! Learning

The Five Questions to Ask When Evaluating A Serious Game | Game On! Learning | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Bryan Austin


"A serious game that will be effective should exemplify these five “best practices” and avoid the corresponding design errors consistently throughout the game.  Each of the “best practices” leads to a question you can ask the supplier.  If you get promising answers, it’s important to pilot test the game on actual trainees (members of your target constituency) within your organization, to gather data on these principles from your context.  Expert reviewers will comment on the overall realism (fidelity) of the game, but remember that they cannot comment on how suited to your trainees the challenge level and feedback are."

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Past/Present: a game to experience history from the inside out

Past/Present: a game to experience history from the inside out | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

"Past/Present is an immersive computer game designed to impart decision-making and critical thinking skills in the study of American history. The game tells the story of four days in the life of a fictional mill town in 1906. Players can choose to be either an immigrant female mill-worker or a native-born male mill manager. Both characters must deal with labor strife as well as earn money to support their families."

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'My Name My Story': Empowering High School Students through Storytelling

'My Name My Story': Empowering High School Students through Storytelling | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it

by Erika MacLeod


"Amit Dodani, a 15-year-old from Los Angeles, CA, talks about 'My Name My Story'--his youth-run leadership program to inspire the next generation of leaders."


"I encourage young people like myself to find their passion and run with it! Everyone's talents can be used for the greater good. For an athlete, it may be teaching disabled children how to play their sport. For a musician, it may be holding a charity concert to raise money for cancer. For a scientist, it may be working with corporations on finding new developments in medicine that can cure millions. For a writer, it may be writing inspirational poetry that moves people in healthy directions. For me, it is public speaking. I recently realized my words really can make a difference."

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David Hain's curator insight, November 19, 2013 12:40 PM

You don't need to be old to be wise! Amit Dodani's story and how he is paying it forward.

Melanie Greenberg's curator insight, November 20, 2013 12:46 AM

Uplifting article!

Patrice McDonough's curator insight, November 20, 2013 1:10 PM

My goal is to help my students to make their story part of their Personal Branding message.  This article will be a good example for them. Thanks for sharing!

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Kurt Squire on Civic Engagement Through Digital Games (Big Thinkers Series)

Kurt Squire on Civic Engagement Through Digital Games (Big Thinkers Series) | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
Game-based learning scholar Kurt Squire explores how leveraging young people's interest in gaming could encourage greater youth community involvement and deeper connections to civic and political life.

Via Maria Margarida Correia, Jim Lerman
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Spotlight: The Ultimate Online Guide to Video Game Development

Spotlight: The Ultimate Online Guide to Video Game Development | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
  via Online Game Design Schools Introduction Chapter 1: Industry Outlook and Job Growth Potential Chapter 2: Game Design Theory Chapter 3: The Artist Track Chapter 4: The Quality Assurance Tr...

Via Maria Margarida Correia
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28 Free eBooks On Game Programming!

28 Free eBooks On Game Programming! | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
Dive into the world of game programming with these 28 free ebooks! Have fun!

Via Official AndreasCY, Maria Margarida Correia, Lia Terzidou
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Official AndreasCY's curator insight, November 3, 2013 2:24 AM

Ever wanted to create all those super awesome games? Here are 28 free ebooks on Game programming!

Agora Abierta's curator insight, November 20, 2013 5:18 AM

Entramos en la vorágine de la creación de videojuegos. Habrá que estar a la altura un con toda esta información.

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Redefining Story for Transmedia in the Gamification Era - GCo

Redefining Story for Transmedia in the Gamification Era - GCo | Serious-Minded Games | Scoop.it
Tim Kring, the creator of Heroes, comes to GSummit SF 2013 and tells us how gamification is redefining storytelling in ways never seen before in transmedia
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