SHE Level 4
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code MHI624322
Module Leader David Moffat
School School of Computing, Engineering and Built Environment
Subject Applied Computer Games
  • A (September start)

Summary of Content

This module will cover the use of game technology in the engagement of people with serious aspects of life, such as games for education, training, health and public policy. Typically, video games would score high on engagement, but low on content. More serious activities, such as education, score high on content but low on engagement. The course will introduce the latest research on the application of play technologies to the design of serious games. This will include relevant theory from psychology of motivation, well-being and learning. The staff are active in the area, to the teaching is research-led. Some of the latest developments in the field will be sampled towards the end of the module (e.g. gamification, mindset theory, analytics). For flexible learning, the module does not set prerequisites in earlier game design modules, so that students from other programs (in the games suite) can take the opportunity to develop their own design skills, and the coursework will be for interdisciplinary teams.


-359? Background -359? The History of Serious Games (SGs) -359? Examples of recent SGs ? The future potential of SGs -359? Simulations, games and SGs; similarities and differences -359? Varieties of SG: sectors, forms and purposes -359? Persuasive games -359? Health / Science / Social Policy / Social Change ? Judgment / Motivation / Preference / Affective Outcomes -359? SGs and need for engagement -359? SGs and play -359? Challenges of SGs -359? Design / implementation / evaluation challenges -359? Prototyping / market / industry awareness / playtesting -359? SGs and learning - game-based learning (GBL) -359? Major thinkers and influencers in the field (e.g. Gee, Prensky) -359? Relevant learning theory (e.g. Vygotsky, Bloom, Papert) ? Declarative, procedural and strategic knowledge ? Games and other computer-aided learning (CAL, ITS) -359? SGs and motivation -359? SDT (self-determination theory) -359? Mindset theory (principally Dweck) -359? Gamification -359? Analytics

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:Examine and appraise the context specific role of Serious Games in societye.g.: science, industry, education, social changeCriticise Serious GamesEvaluate the Specific Design Requirements of Serious GamesCreate Serious Game concepts suitable for an "indie developer"

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The University 'Strategy for Learning' documentation has informed the learning and teaching strategy for this module. The module material will be introduced through lectures, while practical exercises, based on the lecture material, will be given to students for their laboratory sessions. Tutorials will be used to help explain and elaborate on both the lecture material and the laboratory exercises. Full use will be made of GCU Learn to provide Lecture-based and related study materials, along with sample solutions of Tutorial and Laboratory exercises, thus encouraging the development of independent learning and allowing self-reflective feedback on student performance. Staff-based feedback on student performance for submitted work will be provided in line with the University feedback policy, with summative feedback and grades on the coursework assessment utilising GCU Learn. The additional interactive discussion features of GCU Learn will be utilised, as appropriate to the module, to stimulate independent and flexible student learning outwith scheduled class time.

Indicative Reading

-359 1. David, M., & Chen, S (2005). Serious Games: Games That Educate, Train, and Inform . Course Technology Ptr1. -359 2. Gee. J., P (2003). What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy . Palgrave Macmillan. 3. Prensky, M (2007). Digital Game-based Learning . Paragon House Publishers. 4. Ritterfeld, Ute, Cody, Michael and Vorderer, Peter. 2010. Serious Games: Mechanisms and Effects . Routledge. 5. Christian Sebastian Loh, Yanyan Sheng, Dirk Ifenthaler. (Due out in 2015). Serious Games Analytics: Methodologies for performance measurement, assessment, and improvement (Advances in Game-Based Learning). 6. Davidson, Drew et al. (2008) Beyond Fun: Serious Games and Media . Etc. Press. 7. Leonard Annetta and Stephen Bronack (Ed.s) Serious Educational Game Assessment: Practical Methods and Models for Educational Games, Simulations and Virtual Worlds . Sense Publishers, 2010. 8. Bogost, Ian. (2011) Persuasive Games: The Expressive Power of Videogames. MIT Press.

Transferrable Skills

The work in the module will build on skills for: self-confidence and independent working -359? critical thinking and analysis -359? research and scholarship ? creativity ? self-confidence and independent working ? entrepreneurship ? commercial awareness ? appreciating the need for continuing professional development ? interpersonal skills, team-working, leadership ? communication (written, oral and listening) ? presentation skills ? some awareness of strengths, weaknesses and learning style

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Practicals (FT) 12.00
Tutorials (FT) 12.00
Independent Learning (FT) 132.00
Lectures (FT) 24.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 1 n/a 60.00 35% Report (3000 words)
Exam (Exams Office) 2.00 40.00 35% Unseen, closed book