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Learning Analytics in serious games

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Learning Analytics in serious games

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Talk at VS-GAMES 2012 about learning analytics in educational games.
Ángel Serrano-Laguna, Javier Torrente, Pablo Moreno-Ger and Baltasar Fernández-Manjón. Tracing a little for big Improvements: Application of Learning Analytics and Videogames for Student Assessment
#galanoe

Talk at VS-GAMES 2012 about learning analytics in educational games.
Ángel Serrano-Laguna, Javier Torrente, Pablo Moreno-Ger and Baltasar Fernández-Manjón. Tracing a little for big Improvements: Application of Learning Analytics and Videogames for Student Assessment
#galanoe

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Learning Analytics in serious games

  1. 1. Tracing a little for big Improvements: Application of Learning Analytics and Videogames for Student Assessment Baltasar Fernández-Manjón balta@fdi.ucm.es e-UCM research group www.e-ucm.es VS-GAMES 2012, Genoa, Italy
  2. 2. Educational videogames • Teachers are starting to use educational videogames in order to explore new ways to educate their students – Still low adoption • Videogames left as “low-weight” complementary content – Mainly used for motivational purposes – No actual impact on the final mark
  3. 3. Serious games assessment • No many serious games include in-game evaluation • Serious games with integrated assessment usually rely in Q&A structures • … but games produce a lot of data that can be analyzed with educational/assessment purposes • The “box” game should be open …(white box)
  4. 4. What do we analyze? • Every game is very different – But we can group them by: • Game mechanics • Game genre • ….. – There some regularities that can be exploited • Can we define a simple set of universal traces to analyze?
  5. 5. Start, end, quit game traces • Start game: whenever a student launches the game – Information: How many students played the game, who they were and when they played. • End game: whenever a student successfully the game. – Information: who accomplished the goals established for the game – Does the optimal goal attain? • Quit game: whenever a student quits the game, before finishing – Information: who abandoned the game before finishing it, and with the appropriate context, where he quitted.
  6. 6. Phase changes • Usually, games are divided in phases. – In an educational videogame, these phases can mark several educational sub-goals. • Tracing phases changes can be used to: • Identifying most time-consuming phases • Understand how each part of the game is being accessed (if the phase exploration sequence is not linear) • … helping to improve the educational game
  7. 7. Significant variables • Games rely on variables to represent their state – Some of those variables can be relevant for the assessment – Logging when and with which values these variables are updated
  8. 8. User interaction • Raw user interaction (mouse clicks, screen touches, keys pressed…) can be used to retrieve some useful information – Heat maps: • To detect game design flaws • If all user interaction is logged, the whole game play could be reproduced
  9. 9. Some requirements • Most of games are black boxes. – No access to what is going on during game play. • We need access to game “guts” • Or… the game must communicate with the outside world, using some logging framework – Not applicable to COTS games (yet)
  10. 10. Gleaner: Game Learning Analytics for education research • Framework oriented to capture game traces
  11. 11. An example: Lost in Space <XML>
  12. 12. An example: Lost in Space <XML> – Game for teaching XML – Played by students in the classroom • 1 to 2 hours playing • 2 hours defining new levels – Uses Gleaner to log students interactions
  13. 13. Metrics in “Lost in Space <XML>” • Start and end game • Phases changes • Significant variables: – XML commands introduced by the students – Phases scores • User interaction – Clicks on help button
  14. 14. Some early results • Real time metrics – Teacher could see student progress in real time from its computer – At the end of the class, he knew how many students had completed the game • Post-analysis – Most common pitfalls in XML commands where detected – Interactions with the help button indicated those phases where students had more trouble
  15. 15. Yet Another eAdventure example • “The big Party” – Game to teach students with disabilities about habits on their daily life
  16. 16. Metrics in “The big party” • Implemented with a add-on to an eAdventure game • Information collected – User interactions • All mouse interactions (including movement) – Phases changes – Times spent in every phase – Order in phase discovery
  17. 17. Some results • Heatmaps showing elements with most interaction • Tracing ALL interactions allow us to reproudce the entire game play
  18. 18. Conclusions • With simple traces, we can know a lot of about what is going on in our educational games • We can provided real-time feedback to teachers and students, and significantly improve the educational process • This process can also help to improve the game quality • However, rigorous assessment should be based on a deeper data analysis. This is only a first step.
  19. 19. • http://e-adventure.e-ucm.es – New 1.5 version (include Chinese, Rusian and Brasilian version) – Multiplatform (Windows, Linux, Mac) – Videos (also in youtube in the eAdventureUCM channel) – Tutorials – Games (that you can reuse and modify) • Open source code – Sourceforge.net – You can contribute (e.g. coding, eA translation) • Baltasar Fernandez-Manjon balta@fdi.ucm.es

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