Instructional Ethology  Serious Design of Educational Games   Katrin Becker, PhD
IF... <ul><li>we want to make good instructional games </li></ul><ul><li>THEN </li></ul><ul><ul><li>We need to look at: </...
Good Instruction
Good Games?
One way to do this is....
Studying the Masters
Why are these such good teachers? Amos’n’Andy The West Wing
Who are the “good teachers” in games?
Are there game masterpieces?
How can we learn from COTS  games?
My Solution........
<ul><li>That  players  must learn and indeed do  learn  new things  while   playing  the game; </li></ul><ul><li>That succ...
Players  must learn and indeed do  learn  new things  while   playing  the game;
Learning in Games <ul><li>Already Happening </li></ul><ul><li>Learning is what we DO </li></ul><ul><li>Learning is how we ...
Successful  games  are successful at least partially because they  facilitate  that  learning
Successful Games Facilitate Learning
It is possible to examine  learning  in a digital game  without  associating what is learned with value-laden  education a...
Learning vs. Education <ul><li>Learning </li></ul><ul><li>Value-Neutral </li></ul><ul><li>Can be Coincidental </li></ul><u...
If games teach, how do they do it? And......
How do we study “instructional design” in COTS games?
Black Box Reverse Engineering Byrne, E. J. (1992).  A Conceptual Foundation for Software Re-engineering . Proceedings of t...
Ethology
Ethology <ul><li>Causation . What are the stimuli that elicit the response, and how has it been modified by recent learnin...
Instructional Ethology
Sample Analysis
Analysis: Morphology <ul><li>High conceptual coherence </li></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ scores’, game space, set-up, levels </li></...
Analysis: Ethology, Causation (Interaction) <ul><li>Use rod </li></ul><ul><li>Catch fish </li></ul><ul><li>Timing </li></u...
Analysis: Ethology, Development (Ontogeny, Game Flow) <ul><li>Very little change in the game over the life of the game   ...
Analysis: Ethology, Evolution <ul><li>Previous animal crossing (with adaptations for platform) </li></ul><ul><li>Limited  ...
Analysis: Ethology, Function (purpose) – how does it help players?  <ul><li>Size of fish; Location, season, time of day, s...
 
 
Next Steps <ul><li>Compare good & bad games </li></ul><ul><li>Compare Commercial & Educational Games </li></ul><ul><li>Mor...
Thanks!
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Instructional Ethology

1,534 views

Published on

CNIE 2008: A methodology for analyzing learning design in commercial digital games.

Published in: Entertainment & Humor, Design
0 Comments
1 Like
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Views
Total views
1,534
On SlideShare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
35
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
26
Comments
0
Likes
1
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Instructional Ethology

  1. 1. Instructional Ethology Serious Design of Educational Games Katrin Becker, PhD
  2. 2. IF... <ul><li>we want to make good instructional games </li></ul><ul><li>THEN </li></ul><ul><ul><li>We need to look at: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>good instruction </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>good games </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Good Instruction
  4. 4. Good Games?
  5. 5. One way to do this is....
  6. 6. Studying the Masters
  7. 7. Why are these such good teachers? Amos’n’Andy The West Wing
  8. 8. Who are the “good teachers” in games?
  9. 9. Are there game masterpieces?
  10. 10. How can we learn from COTS games?
  11. 11. My Solution........
  12. 12. <ul><li>That players must learn and indeed do learn new things while playing the game; </li></ul><ul><li>That successful games are successful at least partially because they facilitate that learning ; and </li></ul><ul><li>That it is possible to examine learning in a digital game without associating what is learned with value-laden education al aims. </li></ul>Analysis of Commercial Games for Learning Three fundamental assumptions...
  13. 13. Players must learn and indeed do learn new things while playing the game;
  14. 14. Learning in Games <ul><li>Already Happening </li></ul><ul><li>Learning is what we DO </li></ul><ul><li>Learning is how we win the game. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Successful games are successful at least partially because they facilitate that learning
  16. 16. Successful Games Facilitate Learning
  17. 17. It is possible to examine learning in a digital game without associating what is learned with value-laden education al aims.
  18. 18. Learning vs. Education <ul><li>Learning </li></ul><ul><li>Value-Neutral </li></ul><ul><li>Can be Coincidental </li></ul><ul><li>Natural </li></ul><ul><li>Internally Motivated* </li></ul>Education Value-Laden Deliberate Coerced/Persuaded Externally Motivated*
  19. 19. If games teach, how do they do it? And......
  20. 20. How do we study “instructional design” in COTS games?
  21. 21. Black Box Reverse Engineering Byrne, E. J. (1992). A Conceptual Foundation for Software Re-engineering . Proceedings of the International Conference on Software Maintenance, Orlando, FL, USA, 9-12 Nov 1992, p. 326-335.
  22. 22. Ethology
  23. 23. Ethology <ul><li>Causation . What are the stimuli that elicit the response, and how has it been modified by recent learning? </li></ul><ul><li>Function : How does the behaviour impact on the animal's chances of survival and reproduction? </li></ul><ul><li>Development : How does the behaviour change with age, and what early experiences are necessary for the behaviour to be shown? </li></ul><ul><li>Evolution : How does the behaviour compare with similar behaviour in related species, and how might it have arisen through the process of phylogeny? </li></ul>
  24. 24. Instructional Ethology
  25. 25. Sample Analysis
  26. 26. Analysis: Morphology <ul><li>High conceptual coherence </li></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ scores’, game space, set-up, levels </li></ul></ul><ul><li>‘ Standard’ controls </li></ul>Note: this process is time consuming – goal is to build more detailed queries about behaviour based on the initial observations.
  27. 27. Analysis: Ethology, Causation (Interaction) <ul><li>Use rod </li></ul><ul><li>Catch fish </li></ul><ul><li>Timing </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Line of sight’ </li></ul><ul><li>Position of avatar </li></ul><ul><li>Residents talk about fishing </li></ul><ul><li>Some are easy to catch; others hard </li></ul><ul><li>Some are common; others rare </li></ul>Not especially interesting at first glance, but behaviour BECOMES interesting when Reviewed in light of other aspects.
  28. 28. Analysis: Ethology, Development (Ontogeny, Game Flow) <ul><li>Very little change in the game over the life of the game  the change is almost all in the player </li></ul><ul><li>Effect is predictability </li></ul><ul><li>Few penalties beyond immediate one. </li></ul>
  29. 29. Analysis: Ethology, Evolution <ul><li>Previous animal crossing (with adaptations for platform) </li></ul><ul><li>Limited RPG style / sim ancestors </li></ul><ul><li>Format: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Changes in choices (options include only those that make sense) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pockets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Currency </li></ul></ul>
  30. 30. Analysis: Ethology, Function (purpose) – how does it help players? <ul><li>Size of fish; Location, season, time of day, shape, sound (frog) </li></ul><ul><li>Contests </li></ul><ul><li>Collections </li></ul><ul><ul><li>game keeps track for you </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provides 2 ways to collect </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bells for fish </li></ul><ul><li>Experience..... </li></ul><ul><li>Minimal penalties for misses </li></ul><ul><li>Effort is rewarded </li></ul><ul><ul><li>can always sell what you catch, even if it’s not what you wanted </li></ul></ul>
  31. 33. Next Steps <ul><li>Compare good & bad games </li></ul><ul><li>Compare Commercial & Educational Games </li></ul><ul><li>More perspectives </li></ul><ul><li>More games </li></ul><ul><li>Streamline process </li></ul>
  32. 34. Thanks!

×