Another dot in the blogosphere?

Posts Tagged ‘poll

Last Saturday, I delivered a keynote and participated in a panel on game-based learning and gamification.

I had questions that I could not address in the limited time during my keynote as well as the panel at the end of the conference. These were from the pre-conference poll.

I wish to address these questions, but I will focus only on questions that I understand.

How to tie in GBL with small-wins or short-term rewards?

I have no idea how to do this with GBL because I have not implemented GBL with this design or intent. Nor will I ever. During the keynote I described how games could be integrated to focus on thinking skills, attitudes, values, and intrinsic motivation. These take time to develop and I would rather invest in these.

How would I use this technique if the University has a set of rules I have to follow and present?

The university (or partner university in your case) is unlikely to have rules about pedagogy. If it did, that is not a university that is looking to serve for today and tomorrow.

You know the content, context, and your learners best. The WHAT of a prescribed curriculum might be very full. The HOW is your responsibility and limited by your creativity.

Must it be IT based?

The “it” could be games or gamification. Both could be enabled with current technology or not. I gave examples of both during the keynote, so I have addressed that part of the question.

Here is the other part: ICT is a more current term than IT since the former is often more interactive and multi-way while the latter is more transmissive and about regulations.

What types of subjects are suitable for game based learning?

Any and all of them are suitable, especially if you do not limit yourself to content-based learning and expand the possibilities to include critical and creative thinking, socio-emotional learning, soft skills, attitudes and values, etc.

Can Gamification ideas be implemented not through a game but just mere teaching activity?

Gamification does not employ games; it uses deconstructed elements of games, e.g., points, levelling up, leaderboards.

Your question seems to hint at game-like instruction. There are strategies like putting the problem (assessment) first or early, and focusing on just-in-time learning instead of just-in-case front loading.

I would like to try this approach but I am afraid it might take up a lot of the class time. How do I go about it without sacrificing too much of the contact time?

Can you have a cake and not eat it? 😉

Something has to give and if it comes to that, you might have to use your judgement to see what to push out in order include something else.

How viable would it be to introduce gamification within a primary/secondary school classroom? The aim is to use gaming elements to increase engagement between the students and the teacher.

It is certainly viable, as apparent by the number of vendors and parties outside of schooling and higher education who want to do this.

Unfortunately, these groups sell you on the low-hanging fruit of “increased engagement”. Do not play this game because this is not why any technology-mediated strategy should be used.

Trying to engage is like trying to take control of light switches: You try to flip them on so that your students see the light. But they are just as easy to switch off or learners can move on to something else.

Engagement is something you do to try to help your students; empowerment is something you pass to students so they help everyone. By all means engage, but do not forget to empower. Vendors might tell you how to engage with gamification; I would rather see learners empowered by game-based learning.

how to know which game is appropirate [sic] for teaching when we don’t game?

You do not and cannot know. So play!

My replies to these questions might have a perceived tone. I assure the askers that my replies come from a good place and with good intent: I want us to collectively change and improve our practice.

Participants of the session observed how the panel and I approached the Q&A. The same tone and concern should be applied here.

Last Friday I took my son out for a treat at a fast food joint. We opted to try a special menu option that the restaurant offered. As we were among the few trying that option, a “survey uncle” asked me to participate in a poll.

The survey uncle was apologetic for interrupting our meal, but thankful that he had found me. He explained that he had trouble finding my “demographic” (read: old and with purchasing power) so I humoured him.
 

Survey on Obama’s Cairo Speech by Swamibu, on Flickr
Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License   by  Swamibu 

 
The survey was in only English and on an iPad. Participants also had to complete the survey on their own so that the poll was uninfluenced by the survey takers.

I remarked to the survey uncle that he was at the restaurant on the wrong day and time. It was Friday afternoon and kids in school uniforms probably outnumbered the adults 50 to 1. He informed me that it was the polling company’s decision to choose the survey period.

Here is lesson number 1: Listen to your stakeholders and learn about their habits. The company might think it knows better, but it does not.

The survey uncle also recognized that quite a few aunties and uncles in my age group and older 1) were not comfortable taking a survey on an iPad, and 2) did not understand the language of the poll. He had suggested to his bosses that an alternative survey be provided in Mandarin.

Lesson number 2: Listen to your troops on the ground because they are more aware of the issues. For example, the survey uncle realized that the kids around us only bought the cheaper meal items while those that went for the special menu were few and far between. He struggled to meet the quota so that the findings were at least statistically useful.

Lesson number 3: Reach out to your stakeholders in a manner they would be responsive to. As one size does not fit all, you are likely to need different approaches, e.g., in the survey context, this could mean using iPads, paper, and interviews.

The lessons apply to schooling and education. Policymakers and administrators might think they know better or see more from their vantage point. But as long as they are not on the ground, they cannot relate to issues that prevent new policies and change from taking root.

To be more effective, they need to listen to their stakeholders and teachers first. When they do reach out, it should be with a sympathetic and open ear first, not with a closed or iron fist.

I would like to find out how many of my teacher trainees prefer not to receive the automatic email notifications that our ICT wiki generates.

Twitter gets lots of press. News has ranged from how it is being used in the US government to how we learned more about the Mumbai attacks.

Recently some people used it to coordinate a rescue after a snowboarding accident: Yahoo! News – Swiss mountain rescue plays out over Twitter. However, the authorities there played down the role of Twitter.

Nonetheless, other folks are adding more functionality to Twitter. You can create a poll using twtpoll

And you can embed videos using BubbleTweet!


http://edublogawards.com/files/2012/11/finalistlifetime-1lds82x.png
http://edublogawards.com/2010awards/best-elearning-corporate-education-edublog-2010/

Click to see all the nominees!

QR code


Get a mobile QR code app to figure out what this means!

My tweets

Archives

Usage policy

%d bloggers like this: