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GC: Palestine First step towards next generation of educational games?


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Title: GC: Palestine First step towards next generation of educational games?

GC Palestine First step towards next generation
of educational games?
PhD Simon Egenfeldt-Nielsen CEO Serious Games
Interactive 10. November 2007, Roskilde
develop games which contain advanced content,
operate according to sound pedagogical
principles, enable classroom customisation, and
create real excitement within the core game
market - Henry Jenkins
Our company
Background and team
SGI was founded in 2006 in Copenhagen,
Denmark The company focuses on developing
serious games for educational institutions We
develop high-quality games that contain an
inseparable combination of playing, learning
and story-telling. This is done by a unique
cross-disciplinary team with strong roots in
research SGI has been steadily growing and
employs 10 people today (CEO, Commercial
Director, Producer, Game Director, Lead
Programmer, Programmer, Lead 3D animator, 3D
artist, Character artist, Tester)
Our company
Background and team
Commercial titles Global Conflicts Palestine
(complete) Global Conflicts Latin America
(concept) Client projects Bolivia Brænder
(complete) Mayas Eventyr (complete) Darwin
Educational Games
How many play computer games? How many play
educational computer games?
In UK, Canada US - 70 want to, only 30 do
it. WHY? Low quality in existing titles few
to choose from.
Educational Games
History of learning games...
Educational media and computer-assisted-instructio
n shape edutainment. Simulations lives in its own
niche. The Oregon Trail (1973) Where in the
world is Carmen San Diego (1985) Hidden Agenda
(1987) Mathblaster (1985) Crystal Rain Forrest
(1992) Innovative titles lies some time back.
Educational Games
Current educational games
  • Making History The Calm The Storm (WW2)
  • Global Conflicts Palestine (Middle east
  • Bolivia Brænder (oprør gældsslaver)
  • Food Force (World hunger crisis)

There is a real need for titles with potential.
Making History
Food Force
Global Conflicts Palestine
Bolivia Brænder
Trailer Latin
Educational Games
This is not about edutainment
Little intrinsic motivation Extrinsic motivation
through rewards, rather than intrinsic
motivation. No integrated learning experience
Lacks integration of the learning experience with
playing experience - learning subordinated play
experience. Drill-and-practice learning
principles Rely on drill-and-practice rather
than understanding training above learning.
No teacher presence No demands on teachers or
parents. Simple gameplay Built on a simple
gameplay from classic titles. Small budgets
Produced on limited budgets with limited
Educational Games
Edutainment has problems
Most of what goes under the name "edutainment"
reminds me of George Bernard Shaw's response to a
famous beauty who speculated on the marvelous
child they could have together "With your brains
and my looks ..." He retorted, "But what if the
child had my looks and your brains?" (Papert,
1998 88)
Educational Games
Same topic different kind of game
French revolution Quiz show The player must get
all the answers right and compete with other
students. Treasure hunt The player must explore
different web-sites and sources in competition
with students to answer the most
questions. Virtual explorer The player explores
a virtual universe with different sources, people
and methods for solving different missions by
understanding what going on.
Next-gen (Serious Games)
Educational Games
What are we talking about...
Educational games are fundamentally different
than the prevalent instructional paradigm. They
are based on challenge, reward, learning through
doing and guided discovery, in contrast to tell
and test methods of traditional
instruction. -Report of the Federation of
American Scientiest, Educational Games 2006
I learned more history from this game in one
day than I have learned from the teaching the
last 6 months
Oliver Hansen, Student, 16 years
What is the product
Primary target group
Global Conflicts Palestine target students of
13-19 years
  • Primary Citizensship History
  • Secondary Media, religion, ethics, geography

Danish 8th graders using the game early 2006.
(Small TV2 movie)
What is the product
Seconday target group
Global Conflicts Palestine target mature people
with an interest and engagement in current issues
  • Watch documentaries debate programs
  • Consider themselves knowledgable
  • Often females above 30 years
  • Have an above average education
  • Have an above average income
  • Use IT but not necessarily gamers

Serious gamers taking on the challenge.
Welcome to the reality
Material from Global Conflicts Palestine online
learning resource.
Welcome to Global Conflicts Palestine
In-game shots from the game Global Conflicts
Feel and understand the tense atmosphere and
problems of the conflict of Palestine
Build trust by understanding and exploring
different perspectives to get peoples personal
Breath-taking engagement with people, you, the
journalist, makes your mark on the media coverage
Students explore and learn from detailed and
scary environment - they see the inside of the
Trailer Palestine
What is Global Conflicts Palestine
Freelance journalist Get the best article Find
informants Gain their trust Get their story Dig
out best quotes Put together article Highest
journalist level
You Goal Means Winning
What is the product
Teaching form
Teacher talks
Play Game
Group discussions
  • Read topic overview
  • Overview of theme
  • Teachers manual
  • Topics overview
  • Curriculum mapping
  • Explore perspectives
  • Experience issues
  • Mission sheets
  • Discuss experiences
  • Write article
  • Worksheets
  • Online companion
  • Debriefing
  • Evaluation

Topics overview
Teacher manual
Mission sheets
ddd simple tests
Background for students Timeline, documents,
encyclopedia links
Specific themes Work questions, small tests,
links, video pictures
Meet and discuss with other students Forum
In-depth online learning companion w. integrated
webshop for digital distribution
Empirical study
Educational layers
Israeli-Palestinian conflict (Content)
Experience everyday life in the conflict through
real personal accounts on the conflicts core
issues. Human rights, terrorism medias role
(Themes) In the game there will be regular
references to human rights, terrorism, and the
media. Source criticism writing article
(Skills/Methods) Students have to be aware of
the right angle, the agenda of sources, and
article writing. Perspective-taking, critical
thinking bias awareness (Competences) A
variety of perspectives on the same events and
issues, which force students to shift between
perspectives while thinking critically of bias.
What is Global Conflicts Palestine
Blended learning experience
  • Experiential The games provides a virtual tour
    to the conflict with concrete experiences that
    provide a strong starting point for learning
    about the topic.
  • Learning styles Dynamic feedback, interaction
    that makes a difference, multimodal encoding,
    mistakes are safe to make you are presented
    with challneges.

Empirical study
Different rooms for learning styles
  • Kolbs cycle covered with different teaching
    forms in the course.
  • The teacher is crucial to facilitate a full
    learning experience.

Empirical study
Qualitative feedback (students)
Global Conflicts Palestine is a fun and
different way to receive learning (Female
student, 18 years) You had a greater desire to
learn about the topic from Global Conflicts
Palestine (Male student, 16 years) You learn
a lot about how Israelis and Palestinians
respectively look at the conflict, because you
talk to different persons... I think it is good
that the stories derive from reality, providing
the stories with a realistic tone. (Female
student, 18 years)
Qualitative feedback (teachers)
"By playing the game, the students reached a
higher level of understanding on the issues of
the conflict, than I could have accomplished in a
traditional way, so it has my highest
recommendations.(Danish 8th grade
teacher) "They are VERY interested and are
highly motivated to it themselves.The parents
say Wish we had that form of teaching in
school! (Danish high school teacher "I used the
game with our 11th grade World Cultures students
- I have never seen the computer lab so quiet!
All of the students were seriously engaged and
many expressed that they really enjoyed it (US
high school teacher
Empirical study
Students want more...
  • 90 students find it to be an interesting course
  • 88 students find it to be an interesting
    educational material
  • 59 students find they learned more
  • 90 students wants to try a similar course again

Sample 51 Danish High school low-middle class
students after a one-week course (similar results
for 8th graders).
Other support for effiency
Most research say you learn from games - at least
the same as other teaching methods. Below
overview of studies that support learning from
Yes Maybe No
20 1 2
  • More motivated engaged
  • Activity perceived as more challenging
  • Rention is often better

Media coverage
  • ... Global Conflicts er en pioner, der forkaster
    computerspillets rigide krav om lutter
    underholdning for øjnene og erstatter dem med et
    lærerigt engagement for hjernen. Spilmediet er
    blevet skolemodent, for Global Conflicts viser,
    at spil har potentialet til at være dette
    århundredes lærebog, fordi de i kraft af deres
    interaktivitet kan levendegøre verdens
    problemstillinger som intet andet medie.
  • - Review Politiken

Trailer GCLA
  • Buy the private or educational package online at

Contact sen_at_seriousgames.dk Company www.seriousg
Trailer GCLA
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