Production 2

In a plague-ravaged land, ignorance reigns supreme.” – Contagion (game)

Can games, simulations and modelling prepare us for uncertain futures? How do people learn differently in games? How do games provide alternative ways of thinking about ‘knowledge’ while critiquing traditional educational epistemologies and forms of ‘learning’ assessment?

For this production (critical essay), engage the readings to address, unpack and explore key questions and concerns in the readings. Try to keep responses to around 500-600 words max.

Possible Questions / Points of Departure
  • What kinds of critiques are being advanced about traditional forms of school knowledge and related assessment forms (and how/why do the authors articulate new directions and alternative practices)?
  • How do we understand and experience “content” in traditional education/schooling? And wow do we understand and experience “content” in complex/interactive games and game worlds (i.e., not quiz games or ‘educational’ games)? What can ‘good games’ teach us about deeper learning both in and outside of games? What and how do people learn differently – beyond content-based epistemologies – in games and through serious play (e.g., how do Contagion or Epidemic games ‘work’)?
  • What is the relationship between inquiry-driven making and design and learning (given that the authors/researchers were also engaged in design and world building)?
  • How is the problem of representation (and normative mainstream game conventions) addressed in the reading – and how are these concerns addressed in and through matters of design (representation, roles, and modes of agency)?

Take up one or more (inter-related issues above) and ensure you engage the reading(s) closely: identify & unpack at least one significant quote/passage that is, in your view, key to the reading and to your analysis of the text. Develop or critique ideas in the text – and feel free to connect the article/s to your own (play) experiences, and/or to other texts beyond the course, though ensure any connections speak to or illuminate aspects of the readings.