"Design and technology of mobile games, including mixed reality gaming, urban games, and locative media. Case studies of significant systems. Uses and limitations of location-based technologies. Infrastructures and their relationships to gameplay and design." (catalog)
Pervasive Games: Theory and Design by Montola, Stenros, Waern
|Class Attendance / Participation (2 dropped)||~20%|
As the class progresses I may find it necessary to alter the percentages.
This class is a lot of work. You will have to write computer programs. You will have to go out and do field work.
Here are some things you will be learning:
Please note, this is *not* a class on making mobile games. You won't learn about Angry Birds in this class
I prefer to give many small assignments which build up a picture of overall student learning success rather than to rely on one or two large exams which students may bomb based on non-learning related complications.
At the end of the day, learning is the responsibility of the student. I consider myself someone who points students in the right direction and can/will explain the fundamentals of a subject matter. I can't actually do the work of learning for a student. That takes effort and self-initiative. I will help to provide structure and motivation for that learning, but you also need to learn how to expand on this subject yourself. In a technical field like this, you will be left behind the field in about six months, regardless of how well I present the subject matter, if you can't keep learning on your own.
I like to stop talking periodically and let students ask questions.
Class attendance will be determined by completing index cards. The index cards are also a means for me to get feedback about the course.
For each class please write your name on a card, the date, your student ID and a comment about the course.
If you would like to submit an anonymous comment, take an extra card and don't put your name on it.
Collecting feedback this way is a useful and different source of input than other media. It helps me track how the class is understanding the material. Something about paper causes students to say different things than they do on a website.
Several lab assignments will be assigned consisting of learning tasks that will require additional research outside of class preparation.
The goal of the labs will be to give you a chance to familiarize yourself with basic software technologies for modern user interfaces. Rather than producing extensive deliverables the focus is on learning to teach yourself from on-line resources how to build user-interfaces in different technologies. This will hopefully form the basis of being able to create more extensive projects in the future.
Some of these will be able to be done in groups
It is a brave new world. As an instructor it is very difficult to figure out how to navigate the world of laptops, networking and multi-tasking. The landscape of technology and education is moving very fast.
When it comes to taking quizzes as an instructor I often wrestle with figuring out how to make sure people aren't cheating. How can I proctor a quiz and be sure that people aren't relaying their questions via Google glass to someone else or keeping banned information on hand? Should I lock down the classroom? Buy a cell-phone jammer? Then I wonder, if this is the world we live in, then why are we making artificial rules for what the world is like when you take quizzes?
Several quizzes will be assigned covering the assigned readings and discussions in class. The goal of the quizzes is to motivate you to process and learn the material in the text book and lecture.
For this class we are going to implement the following quiz policies:
For quizzes, we are going to open everything up. You can use any resources you want. Quizzes will be strictly timed, so you will need to know the information and have thought about it, taken notes, etc. before you start the quiz. But you can talk to anyone you want and do anything you want except take answers from someone else without their permission (that will treated like plagiarism). The quizzes will be curved to a B+ (88) and one standard deviation will be set an A (95). So if everyone gets a 100% then everyone will get a B+. It is in your best interest to do better than everyone else.
Part of this brave new world impacts tool use. I strive to pick the best-of-class tools to use to administer this class and with which to teach. That requires using multiple websites. They are carefully chosen. Unfortunately, like most of the rest of online activities they are also highly fragmented (not one super-tool). We utilize 3 online tools in this class. Please familiarize yourself with their use and location. I expect you to check in and use all three:
Another way in which technology is changing is the way it is used during lecture time.
On the one hand my students are almost always adults. You should be able to choose to use electronics in class if you want. On the other hand there is a world of sophisticated software, marketing and designs that are doing everything they can to get your attention. They are so good at what they do that you don't have control over your own cognition. One thing that is clear - if you have your laptop open, if you are texting, tweeting, pinteresting, doing email, surfing the web, playing candy crush etc, you are not learning as much as people who put away their electronics and focus fully on the class. The truth is you are lousy at multi-tasking and it's hurting your grades because it's preventing you from thinking deeply about anything. Putting away the devices requires discipline that some of you need to learn, but won't unless you are forced.
There's an additional problem though. It turns out that if the person next to you is using a laptop, it hurts your GPA also. Using your laptop is like second-hand smoke. It's not just you hurting yourself, it's you hurting other people as well.
Clay Shirky has written a long article about these problems that is worth considering as we start off a new quarter
To try and handle this we are going to reserve the front half of the classroom as a technology-free zone. In these rows you are asked to put away your phones, your tablets, your laptops, your Google glass, your secret-spy earpiece, etc. for the duration of the class. You can takes notes on paper. For those who want the distraction free environment, this is for you.