GameChangers goes on tour: Part 1 @CUScarborough


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The GameChangers programme is an exploratory and experimental programme at Coventry University’s Disruptive Media Learning Lab, where we explore the application and implication of play and games in teaching and learning, specifically in HE. And we are currently going on tour!

As part of the two new spin-offs of the programme, the mobile GameChangers part-funded by HEFCE aims to expand the initiative’s remit to include the other Coventry University campuses (Scarborough, London and Dagenham).

We are currently in CU Scarborough engaging with staff and students (20-21 March 2017) it has been an exciting visit so far. Students are very engaged with the playful approaches of the different play and game-based workshop tasters we are running, such as Thinking with your hands using Lego, Game design and narratives via our associate (Coventry FabLab), Remixing Play into a GamePlan, narratED (What is your story?), etc.

We visited the Sixth Form college in the afternoon on our first day and the reception was also very encouraging. GameChangers was indeed a hit there, especially with the arts and media (graphics) students.

Mobile GameChangers also allows us to investigate new educational “geography”, which includes mobile and ‘pop-up’ creative spaces for fostering creativity and innovation in learning. We will be back in Coventry next (22-23rd) and will also visit our London Campus in May!

A big shout out to the team Helen Keegan, Luca Morini, Oliver Wood and Peter Coleman!!! ACE!

See you soon!

Post-digital transformation via playful and gameful approaches


Living in a digital age includes facing head on options on sophisticated offerings,  cacophony saturations of noise information, divided attention, etc. We tend to be influenced by the latest fad trend and pressure from having to comply to the digital norms can be a bit overwhelming.

However, being too over-driven by technology and the latest trends in digital engagement can take away the value from the “experience” that these technologies intend to foster in the first place.

So how do we cope with this? No real answer really – try switching off and hide in a tranquil forest somewhere? This actually reminds me of yo-yo dieting. I believe in enjoying stuff in smaller portions.

Oh what am I getting to with this Friday brain-fart  post? Well, I’ve been thinking about post-digital transformation of mindsets that will help mould a practice that will act as a conduit between old custom and practices into new and exciting territories. It is about taking inspirations from old and tested practices and remix them into new solutions. And how such practice can help us repurpose rather than re-invent (?).

How can we do it playfully? Taking inspirations from the methods that I have tested, implemented and published within the GameChangers context, I am wondering if collectively these approaches could help individuals to discover and reflect on their playful experiences and use these to inform the design of the experience they wish to facilitate – either for their customers, students, patients, clients, etc. Note that some of these methods that I developed are currently being adopted and adapted by others (most recently – the Remixing Play approach was adopted by Adi Montas in her MBA workshop in Guatemala).

With these perspectives, I have drafted a concept that I will test with real participants. The transformation process should start with the discovery and onboarding stage to ensure that they will invest in the process – mindsets transformation is not a short term feat- so the more they invest in the initial experience, the more they will invest in further activities. The draft idea is as presented below:

It would be interesting to hear any feedback on this. I am currently working on some strategy with some European partners on ways to implement this with different stakeholders.

What is your story? Cards – get them here


Screenshot 2016-05-06 18.57.38The ‘What is your story?’ cards were developed based on  Experience Design concept. It is my firm belief in focusing on a more human-centred design of solutions to real challenges.

Emphasising on understanding what experiences we want to facilitate will help us design effective solution or product. When you create an engaging interface to your services, you will be able to onboard your users better and faster and they will engage with your ‘content’ more. Personal investments in the onboarding stage will help them to invest more in what is on offer. However, it is key to ensure that level of participation is maintained with continuous engaging experience.

When I collaborated with Lauren Heywood on the design of the cards, we decided to remix the experience design approach into a more generic and playful solution for using story telling and narratives to enhance individual creativity towards collective intelligence. When used in a group of four for instance, creating narratives around the same set of cards will showcase the richness of ones experience and background that influence the stories they tell. And collectively, a shared narrative or solutions can be achieved.

 

And these cards have been used by peers internationally  and in many different iterations. They were designed to be generic enough to allow you to formulate your own games, workshops, tutorials, and best of all, they are free to download and use (CC by NC 4.0).

Please tweet us if you are using or adopting these cards. Would love to hear from you!

Tweet: @sarnab75 #GChangers #PlayRemixed

Remix Play Summit 2017


remix-play-gchangers-bannerThe Remix Play Summit has finally materialised and play-personified Feb 15th, 2017 at the Disruptive Media Learning Lab! The initial idea was concocted last year – see a brief introduction to the Remixing Play concept. Since then we have carried out our Remixing Play approach with various groups at the university as well as internationally (including Germany, France, Trinidad and Tobago). And the key highlight is the main celebration of Play in HE at the Remix Play Summit 2017. A huge shout out to the GameChangers and DMLL team, who  coordinated the event, especially Helen Keegan, Oliver Wood, Cathryn Thompson-Goodwin, Lauren Heywood, Debra James, Luca Morini, Samantha Clarke… And thanks to all the speakers and everyone who participated.

The event went brilliantly with clear progressions from the context for play and games through to play in HE and practical insights into gameful and playful design, thanks to our featured speakers – The Godfather of the Game Industry (Ian Livingston CBE), The Godfather of play studies (Bernie de Koven), play for HE researcher and activist (Professor Nicola Whitton) and a well known researcher of gameful design, whose definition of ‘gamification’ is widely accepted and quoted by others (Dr. Sebastian Deterding).

The event was very interactive and there was no dull moments!

Please also have a look at Daryl Peel’s fantastic summary of the day.

The summit also included showcases of the various playful and gameful toolkits and methods which have been developed and/or implemented under the GameChangers programme (including the EscapED, What is your story, Lego). More toolkits will be provided on the GameChangers website soon (still being revamped as we speak).

The summit has also served as a good platform for the Newton CreativeCulture UK-Malaysia project. The Malaysian team was inspired by the event and provides a strong introduction to the adaptation of the GameChangers approach in Malaysia.

The Summit’s twitter hashtag #PlayRemixed was also trending on the day in the UK – charted at no 3 on the trending list! A great feat! And we have also reached a huge audience. Thanks to Debra James for the TweetReach snapshot below.

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Here’s to the next instalment of Remix Play Summit 2018!

#Newton #CreativeCulture Kicked off #designthinking #games #play #gamification #culture


creative-cultures-logo-blue-redDMLL has recently received funding from NEWTON UK-SEA (AHRC + MoHE) programme to expand the impact of the GameChangers initiative into South-East Asia. The project is called CreativeCulture, which stands for ‘Creative and participatory transcultural practice and problem solving through game design and computational thinking’ and we are collaborating with Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS) based in Borneo, Malaysia. This is one of the two new spin-offs of the GameChangers movement initiative. 

The partnership will exploit existing expertise at the DMLL and UNIMAS, crossing various disciplines including game-based learning, design and computational thinking, creative economy, social informatics, pedagogy and cultural heritage. Innovative and industry-driven pedagogical approaches developed at the lab will be key to expanding the impact of the community participatory work UNIMAS has been spearheading in Malaysia, especially responding to the need to scale up quality and creative learning across the Malaysian Borneo.

The project was recently kicked off at the DMLL (14 – 17 February) in conjunction with the Remix Play Summit (15 Feb). We have had the pleasure to host Associate Prof Fitri Mohamad, Dr. Jacey–Lynn Minoi and Mr. Terrin Lim at the lab for the whole week, where they have been involved in the programme design sprint for the CreativeCulture programme. The DMLL team will be in Malaysia to conduct a series of workshop and small scale pilot in UNIMAS in August 2017.

Get your game on with @Disrupt_Learn and @BeaconingEU #gbl #gamification #pervasive


DMLL_logo_mainReferring back to my last post on the Beaconing project; we are in our second year with a critical milestone that concerns the development and integration of a demonstrator for showcasing the Beaconing ‘anytime anywhere’ gameful learning solution.

And we are looking for a new talent to join us at the Disruptive Media Learning Lab (DMLL) and be part of the Beaconing’s coordinating and leadership team. DMLL is a cross-university experimental unit comprising of academics, learning technologists, educational developers and researchers. The Lab is based in the heart of the campus, uniquely designed to promote open dialogues, collaborative work and exploratory play for all interested in defining the 21st century University.

Extract from the advert we have just put out. The deadline for application is 3rd March 2017. So chop chop people.

The Research Associate will undertake and play a lead role in the research, development and evaluation of pervasive and gamified approaches for the Horizon 2020 BEACONING Project (Beaconing.eu), which will include designing and developing pervasive and gamified learning scenarios (gamified lesson path design) and applications that promote cross-subject teaching and learning, recruiting and engaging with stakeholders/users, evaluating the impact and effectiveness of new and innovative education interventions through the collection and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data, and disseminating the findings.

Currently in its second year, the project is now at the integration phase of the gamified play-lesson plans, which involves working with relevant technical partners across the consortium towards the development, testing and piloting of the Beaconing solution.

BEACONING stands for ‘Breaking Educational Barriers with Contextualised, Pervasive and Gameful Learning’. The project aims to exploit and integrate pervasive, context-aware and gamified techniques and technologies, framed within the Problem-Based Learning context towards facilitating ‘anytime anywhere’ learning.

The Research Associate will also participate in other research activities (with a particular focus on Games Science) within the Disruptive Media Learning Lab (DMLL).

To apply please visit: https://staffrecruitment.coventry.ac.uk/tlive_webrecruitment/wrd/run/ETREC107GF.open?VACANCY_ID%3d830520Ef1E&WVID=1861420Izv&LANG=USA

#BeaconingEU is now a year old #gbl #gamification #pervasive #hybrid


1.1Yes this post is a bit late as it is actually a year, 1 month and 20 days old today! The project has since produced some early mock-ups that were demonstrated at the last GALA conference in Utrecht, and has also been shortlisted for the Best Education Project award at the last Gamification World Congress 2017 in Madrid. Beaconing has also been featured in the various keynote speeches and workshops all over the world.

pervasiveThe project has been both exciting and challenging at the same time so far. Linking learning and gaming can be a bit tricky – read my paper on the trans-disciplinary perspectives of game-based intervention development. However, we have managed (15 partners) to find a common ground on top of which we are building the Beaconing’s ‘anytime anywhere’ and playful learning platform.  Find out more about the project here.

The components are still being developed and unit tested. We are working towards the first integrated prototype by mid April 2017 and will be showcased at the Else conference (hosted by the Beaconing’s technical lead- ATS). The small scale pilot is due to start in April as well to ensure that we involve the pilot schools in the process. I will definitely share the screenshots as well as the promotional video(s) on here once we have them ready.

Follow us on Twitter: @BeaconingEU  #BeaconingEU