I am delighted to re-post a blog from CLOmedia.com on 3D GameLab. Sify is proud of its contribution to get this platform up and running.
There is something fascinating going on at Boise State University and specifically the Department of Educational Technology.
Let me introduce you to 3D GameLab, arguably an actual example demonstrating the evolution of today’s antiquated learning management system.
The brainchild of Lisa Dawley and Chris Haskell, 3D GameLab is an online game-based learning environment facilitated by what are known as quests. What are quests, you ask?
Quests are individual learning components such as short videos, diagrams, activities, text, audio, etc., that (when combined together) can make up the learning requirements of a traditional class. Students, however, have choice in what quests they want to gobble up. Imagine students having a say in what aspects of a topic like cellular biology or World War II history they are interested in that can make up the pedagogy of the overarching learning outcome of a traditional course. The students are in charge of constructing their road; the teacher provides as many interlocking bricks as is necessary for the students to build their own meandering path to reach the destination.
Students can rank, rate, comment and provide feedback on each of the quests for others to view as well.
As an added bonus, dependent on the learner, those quests can be accomplished in isolation, cooperatively or competitively within the friendly game environment. As the learner completes each quest, he or she is not awarded a percentage or letter grade, but experience points instead. These points need to add up to the total point requirement for course completion.
And yes, in-game badges and awards are a big part of the environment as well.
The project, although conceived by Dawley and Haskell, seems to be intellectual property of Boise State University and through research it completed, a go-to-market business model looks to be in discussion. There is a closed beta under way and thus far, teacher feedback is positive and perhaps glowing.
You can read the entire blog here.