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ASTD Conference November 5th, 2011 at 11:00AM Topic: Polygons and Pedagogy: Instructional Design Using User-Generated Content in Video Games

Philip works as an instructional designer for Sony PlayStation. Philip spoke about how video games will become learning activities. The video games of today have not focused on rapid learning, but with some adjustments in content, the video games that people are playing today can become learning exercises. User-generated content using a program called Little Big Planet 2 makes it possible to design video games that will enable instructional designers to create learning activities with a familiar gaming interface. http://www.littlebigplanet.com/en/2/

See video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcCwOdP0ML8
(not sure we should use this link, it has some graphic imagery in the introduction. also the video does not reveal much. what is the goal of this link?)

This is a revolution in gaming because it allows game players to create their own experiences and adventures. Gaming is now becoming an open platform where users can create their own content. With the ability to create User-Generated content, it is possible to use a Sony PlayStation as a learning device. Audience members brought up the concern that there are generational issues with this, because not everyone with understand how to use the PlayStation controller. Philip says it is designed in a way for anyone to be able to learn how to play, but acknowledges that generations that grew up with video games already intuitively understand how this works.

Philip noted that integrating learning content into gaming has tremendous potential for helping kids learn. He cited the book “How Computer Games Help Children Learn.” In this book, it describes “user-generated content as the next big thing.” User-generated content is when you can create a story plot for a character in a video game and ask questions. In Little Big Planet 2 you can create your own Avatar, or player, and go on an adventure playing a video game, while encountering learning questions and challenges.

Philip is inspired by learning experts Daniel Pink, (Allison likes Daniel Pink btw) and James Paul G., and Jim Gator?, and cites the book What Learning Has to Teach Us. Philip claims that learning is already built into video games, but we have not harnessed it for learning. Using video games allows for skill review and movement to varying levels of learning. Video games also teach soft skills such as persistence. Philip talks about gaming as the new “thinking.” He talked about how we have moved from an Industrial era of left brain concepts to a new age of abstract thinking and video games help teach this style of thinking.

Philip argues that video games can go beyond “edutainment” and we can now teach visual metaphors, create rapid prototypes and reach level 6 of Blooms Taxonomy. Video games are a new set of tools that allow for creation.