First I would like to make it clear that I represent the City University of New York School of Professional Studies and make a disclaimer that I do not represent the City of New York nor the NYC OEM; this is required by our NYC lawyers. It helps to understand the impacts of climate change; NYC is the third most vulnerable City to Hurricanes on the eastern seaboard behind New Orleans and Miami. To give you and idea of the scale of a planned evacuation response… In a worst case scenario of a cat.3 storm, NYC would have to evacuate 2.3 million people from flood zones. For this level of response, emergency sheltering estimates a need for 600,000 shelter clients, roughly the size of the population of Charlotte North Carolina. Staffing would require 68,000 City workers, most of whom are not be familiar with working in an emergency shelter. So evacuating the City’s flood zones and setting up emergency shelters for the size of a major city within 24 hours as you can imagine is a complex undertaking.
The largest targeted group with the greatest training requirement are Hurricane Shelter Managers, roughly 2,000 out of the 32,000 managers who are required to take training on an annual basis. Over 95% have been trained over 4 years starting in 2007. The evaluation feedback was that they wanted hands on work in an emergency shelter conducting the same activities and dealing with the same issues that they would in an emergency sheltering response. With 32,000 managers let alone 2,000, it would be impossible to do this in a physical environment with these numbers as most shelter facilities are schools that are used year round, not to mention the logistics involved.
My son asked me this morning is that a scary monster? Of course some of the problems we are facing seem monstrous. Number of subscribers as of Oct.7, 2010 is 12 million. Refer to trivia questions. I would like to answer why we might use games or virtual world simulations in training.
Quick show of hands: How many of you use or have used games (casual, serious) in the classroom or online? OK. If all raise hands. So I am preaching to the converted on this one. If some do not may I ask you why? (find a couple, get some quick answers) If I tell a class, “we are going to start module 2”, what do you think is going on in their heads? Now if tell you “we are going to play a game.” what do you think pops in their heads? • Children will spend 10K hrs. playing games through age 21; Kids spend 10k hours 5th grade-12th grade. • More women are playing games than men. • The number of hours playing games for average person is 8 hours and is growing. • Increasing minority use of mobile games.
Gaming is good at helping you: Instill a sense of urgent optimism; we tend to think that we can overcome the evil ogres of our world after facing them down on the computer. Weaving a tight social fabric; we like people more even if they beat us in the game. Puts the learner in a mindset of blissful productivity- the learner is engaged and alert, especially if they are playing with others. Creates epic meaning, and when learning is embedded in a meaningful context and connected to emotion it is much more likely to be talked about, recalled, and practiced. It is the epic journey, the hero’s journey that we are asking the learner to embark on. According to Joseph Campbell there are a number of stages in the hero’s journey: a call to adventure, a road of trials, the hero achieves the goal or boon, (self)-discovery, return home with the boon or gift to improve the world…in this case with the knowledge of what they would need to do to help in a time of disaster. Ask last trivia question: Alexey Pajitnov, in Soviet Union, based on ancient Greek game based on tetrominoes. It has been one of the most popular games ever with more 30 million users. Tetris, as playing other games of this type show improved cognitive functioning.
Virtual worlds are great for: Museum displays Operational application and critical incidents Co-creation, small group work Group forums, social networking Games and exercises Concept of operations
Giving a guided tour or for museum exhibits where you would like to have the visitor move through a physical space that illustrates the context. It also allows for a historical reenactment without all of the work to reproduce something physically or endangering anyone; it also allows the participant to play a role… which leads me to …
Use in role play; in this instance we are looking at the use by the Canadian Border Service.
Operational application or critical incident, here we are looking at an emergency room patient who was brought in after a major car accident that we as a medical team need to treat.
It can be used beyond learning, for use in working together, here is a group that uses a common platform for developing a virtual building whose plans will then be used for an actual physical space.
I attend a weekly professional meeting in SL hosted by a vendor that we work with.
It can be used for exercise and game like interaction.
This is an illustration of an IBM green data center concept of operations.
This past year together with the Gronstedt Group. We built a virtual world training simulation using Second Life. This is based on real school in Brooklyn that would be used as an emergency shelter. This includes a customized orientation section for new users.
This includes activities such as setting up a Command Center and other functional areas in the shelter.
Unloading Supplies and Setting Up the Facility
Receiving Shelter Clients and Problem Solving.
Preparing for the arrival of the storm, dealing with the storm’s aftermath, and shutting down the facility.
Confusion About Original Design In initial hurdle we encountered was around design; our client wanted this to be a single user purely stand alone course. It was designed as both single and multi-player. Gatekeepers: IT Security The major hurdle that we encountered was IT security, this is both within City Gov’t and the University; City Gov’t workers are behind a string ring of firewalls, for good reason. Getting access to the course has been a major hurdle that we are still addressing. We are tackling this currently by scheduling computer labs in City University for participants. We are also looking at web browser based solutions and the possibility of converting the entire course to another platform such as Unity. SL not business friendly nor a game engine Second Life, while a rich ecosystem, is owned by Linden Labs who has not been the easiest to deal with although they appear to be doing some outreach right now to institutional users. The platform was not intended as a game engine, so there were a lot of adaptations such as the HUD, chat features for open ended questions and multiple choice answer questions, some that were not elegant. Long Simulation The course is elaborate, we are pushing the envelope on this, it would be better to break this down into smaller modules to be taken in phases. Right now it is about 4 hours long. Support and Reporting We are still working on the formula for course support needed as it is not purely a stand alone training like a Flash based online course. Reporting is also being formalized; what is nice is that we do get a report on the different interactivities. LL: Beg, Borrow, Steal: Try Before You Buy! Major lesson learned: Test early and test often. Use a small drill, beg borrow and steal (from others as you can); try before you buy.
This has been well received by the people who have participated; we have had only about four groups who have gone through this course from start to finish. There are a number of great aspects of this: Sense of place One of our goals with our training is to instill a sense of confidence; those who take this know the run of the place and have been in the middle of the action, so in a sense they have been there, done that. Group Learning and Commitment Unlike a Flash Based course where it is done individually or a classroom course where it difficult to sense level of involvement; the groups here have a team commitment and are committed to working together; when one person disappears the others know it. On the other hand they rely on one another for assistance and can share knowledge in tackling problems. What we have seen emerge in the small number of sessions is that one person, quite naturally assumes the role of the leader, and others are playing support roles. It would be interesting to test whether these people would do the same in a real life situation. The research bears out that MMORGs are good devices for identifying and building leadership abilities. Tracking and Reporting Performance We can track performance, but unlike a standard LMS we can track open ended chat logs, see what types of interactions, and link performance to activities with a higher level of fidelity to the actual one in an emergency shelter. Extendable to Other Uses We can build on this and go one level higher and have a number of emergency shelters running at the same time, reporting up to an evacuation center; we have 4 islands each with a shelter. Last thing that is really a great benefit is that participants want to play again.
This has been an arduous journey, one that at times we were not sure whether we would arrive at our goal. There were a number of people who mocked what we were doing, ridiculed the platform as merely a frivolous game, strongly doubted if we would succeed, and presented many challenges to our work. We are now seeing the light at the end of the journey as demonstrated by the early feedback we have received; in fact we have been honored as a finalist in the 2011 Federal Virtual Worlds Challenge which is an open, global challenge to the world for the best of the best implementations within virtual environments. The Challenge is an annual event led by the U.S. Army Research Laboratory - Simulation & Training Technology Center. This award will take place later this month in Orlando, Florida. Please wish us luck. Whether we win or lose, the journey we undertook was well worth it.
Training Delivered• 2,000 Hurricane Shelter managers• 2007-10 Trained 90% of this group• Wanted hands on training exercisesRunning simulation exercises in aphysical environment for this size target? Impossible! 3
Why use games or virtual world simulations in training? 4
Every Day is Game Day 10K Hours=Children spend playing games= in school 5-12 grades 5
Every Day is Game Day• Instill urgent optimism and confidence*• Weave a tight social fabric• Put the learner in blissful productivity• Epic meaning*These points are taken from a TED Talk by Jane McGonigal: Gaming canmake a better world you can watch the original at:http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/jane_mcgonigal_gaming_can_make_a_better_world.html 6
Why Virtual Worlds?*Learning or training archetypes referenced in the following are from Ch. 5 LearningIn 3D: Adding a New Dimension to Enterprise Learning and Collaboration(Essential Knowledge Resource) by Karl Kapp and Tony O’Driscoll 7
Challenges• Confusion About Original Design• Gatekeepers: IT Security• SL not business friendly nor a game engine• Long Simulation• Support and ReportingLL: Beg, Borrow, Steal: Try Before You Buy! 21
Rewards• Sense of Place• Group Learning, Group Commitment• Tracking and Reporting on Performance• Extendable to Other Uses• Participants Want to Play Again! 22
Only thosewho attemptthe absurd willachieve theimpossible.-M.C. Escher 23
Contact Info:Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgBlog: tragedyofthe.commons.gc.cuny.eduBook & Link References:Learning in 3D: Adding a New Dimension to Enterprise Learning andCollaboration (Essential Knowledge Resource (Pfeiffer)) by Karl Kapp andTony O’DriscollLearning Online with Games, Simulations, and Virtual Worlds:Strategies for Online Instruction (Jossey-Bass Guides to OnlineTeaching and Learning) by Clark AldrichTrain for Success Events:http://www.facebook.com/TrainForSuccess?v=app_7146470109&ref=ts 24
Effectiveness of Online (Elearning) in Retention
100-200 hours development per instructional hour= Top Cost $200 x 200= $40,000Bottom Line Costs (Direct)=
300-400 hours development per instructional hour= Top Cost $200 x 400= $80,000Bottom Line Costs (Direct)=
500-700 hours development per instructional hour= Top Cost $200 x 700= $140,000Bottom Line Costs (Direct)=
Bottom Line Costs (Direct) Top Cost $140,000 Top Cost $80,000 Top Cost $40,000