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SCC 2012 Evaluating games: learning through play?; Formative evaluation (Hannah Clipson)
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SCC 2012 Evaluating games: learning through play?; Formative evaluation (Hannah Clipson)


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  • 1. Evaluating Online Museum Games– Formative EvaluationHannah ClipsonAudience Research and Advocacy Unit, May 2012
  • 2. Introduction Using a case-study to explore the benefits of evaluating online museum games during the development stage – Formative Evaluation. Methodologies.
  • 3. Why Develop Museum Online Games? To go beyond the walls of the museum – reach out to a large, diverse audience, providing those that can’t or won’t visit with an experience of your content or collections. To articulate and engage the user with difficult / boring science content. To deliver enjoyable learning experiences. The market for games is huge!
  • 4. Formative Evaluation – What’s the Point?Why do we evaluate a game during the development stage? To improve it! To investigate if the game is meeting the objectives you set at the start of the project. To explore if the game is meeting the needs of your target audience. To identify and remove the barriers to usability, motivation and comprehension.
  • 5. Futurecade
  • 6. Futurecade An online suite of arcade style games where teenagers can explore the way contemporary science and technology affects their everyday lives.Brief Overview:To communicate specific areas of complex science content: Space Junk Synthetic Biology Geoengineering – Cloud Brightening Robo-LobstersLearning embedded in the gameplay – subtlety essential. Primarily targeted at teenagers, both inside and outside the classroom.
  • 7. Aim: To foster critical thinking, informed decision-making and interest in science.Objectives: To be thought-provoking, stimulate and promote discussion. To provide challenges and rewards. To result in the players walking away from it wanting to find out more.Learning Outcomes: An understanding that developments in science and technology will affect our lives. An understanding that there will be upsides and downsides of new science technologies.
  • 8. MethodologyEvaluation Strategy – Why: To enable you to understand how you will create a high quality game that meets your objectives and meets the needs of your audience.When developing your strategy, what to consider: Who is the target audience? What do you want to find out from the evaluation? How will you find this out? What are you going to do with your findings?
  • 9. MethodologyConcept Testing Thoughts on the game proposal, the science and the look and feel. Focus Group – 6 teenagers.
  • 10. MethodologyWireframe Testing Focusing on navigation, content, suitability for the target audience and engagement. 6 participants to test.
  • 11. MethodologyPrototype Testing 2 prototypes – focusing on comprehension of the science, usability and engagement. Game testing with small groups of teenagers.
  • 12. MethodologyRobustness Testing Identifying bugs. Recruit as many testers as possible!
  • 13. MethodologyUsing your findings – feeding back to designers. After each stage, findings used to inform direction and to make positive changes. Ideal to meet face-to-face with designers to enable conversation.
  • 14. MethodologyWhy Conduct the Formative Evaluation? ‘Cloud Control’ representing inaccurate science to users.
  • 15. Hannah Clipson Audience Advocate Audience Research and AdvocacyLearning and Audience Development Unit Science Museum Exhibition Road London SW7 2DD 020 7942