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Session Name:

Serious Uses for Playful Worlds: A Case Study of the University of There


This talk presents findings from a yearlong mixed-methods study, funded by the National Science Foundation, of the University of There (UOT), a player-run distributed learning community within the virtual world UOT is both a large-scale collaborative project and a learning environment within a virtual world originally designed as a social play space.

Findings include:
* Play creates conditions that Computer-Mediated Collaboration experts have found enhance collaboration
* Players reported happiness as one of the motivations for their volunteer contribution
* The play context allowed instructors to experiment emergently combine traditional classroom learning with well-tested teaching modes, such as situated and multi-modal learning
* User-created worlds have cultures of constructionism (Bruckman) which make them learning communities by definition.

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  • GDC 2010
  • Celia Pearce
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
  • free content
  • Serious Games Summit
  • Serious Games