2009 Case Studies
Presentations included information on:
- the program goals, participants, stakeholders, and resources
- the project’s accomplishments and lessons learned
- measures to identify evidence of changed behavior and outcomes, and the project’s return on investment
- access to the application or resources used to create the program
Center for Advanced Transportation Technology (CATT Laboratory),
University of Maryland and Forterra Systems, Inc
I-95 Corridor Coalition Virtual Incident Management Training
Join the CATT Laboratory as they profile their virtual world game project created to uniformly train and reinforce best practices in transportation emergency management. The primary audience the game is designed for are first responders and transportation officials along the East Coast I-95 Corridor.
The CATT Lab worked with the I-95 Corridor Coalition and Forterra Systems Inc. to create an intensive training program that uses three-dimensional, multi-player computer gaming simulation technology and distance-based learning technologies to test, validate, certify, and reinforce the dissemination of best incident management practices across the Coalition region.
A virtual incident management training program has been developed to present typical incident situations and allow the participants to play out their normal roles in what is essentially a highly structured and recorded video game. In this way traffic management personnel and incident responders can experience a wide array of realistic scenarios, analyze the impacts of their decisions, and be trained about appropriate responses and communication as well as the consequences of inappropriate responses and communication breakdowns.
The presentation will explore how the project team overcame challenges such as technology deployment and motivation for the adoption of the new method. With a focus on the importance of creating an effective user interface, the team was able to achieve a high level of usability for participants. This solution allowed the team to deliver a uniform training platform, with wide distribution and cost savings.
Experience the CATT Lab’s virtual transportation incident management game and explore how the best practices and techniques they employed to prepare emergency responders.
Cisco Certification Exam Study Games
Cisco has been developing Learning Games for over five years to enhance their Certifications Program. These games have been accessed over 750,000 times by users in over 125 countries. Student surveys have demonstrated that these games are not only a fun way to learn, practice and assess learning, but in many cases the learning from these games is considered better than traditional methods. Join members of the Learning@Cisco Group for an interactive presentation that will describe the game development projects and provide hands-on demonstration of games like:
- The Cisco Binary Game – designed to teach networking students the binary number system, the game has gone viral on game sites all over the world, proving that a learning game can be a lot of fun.
- The Cisco Mind Share game – touted as the greatest network training game in the world, this is Cisco’s most comprehensive game, tackling an entire certification curriculum. For this game Cisco engaged game designers who have developed games for LucasArts, Sega, Disney and others.
Cisco will share valuable lessons learned that are a must-know for anyone considering learning games for their organization. They will explore questions such as:
- How can you make a learning game that actually teaches?
- How do you make the game fun?
- Where do you get started?
- What mistakes can you avoid?
- How do you use good gaming elements in your learning game?
- The game is built, now what?
- What about support, marketing, distribution, maintenance?
This case study session promises to provide some remarkable insights into developing great learning games.
Deep End Interactive
Winds of Orbis: An Active-Adventure
Join the Active Adventure team of newly formed Deep End Interactive to explore their action-adventure video game, The Winds of Orbis. The project was created by graduate students from the Carnegie Mellon University Entertainment Technology Center to counter the growing rate of child obesity due in part to increasingly sedentary forms of recreation. The game is the first action-adventure video game to combine the Nintendo Wii Remote and Nunchuk with a Foot Pad to craft a revolutionary new active gaming experience.
Recently Winds of Orbis was recognized as one of top ten video games in the student game of the year category at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) Independent Games Festival. Their case study will explore techniques and best practices including how they used a loose scrum methodology, as well as group decision making on project direction and key features, and playtesting to develop game features and gather information for design iteration.
"Designing an entirely new interface that was intuitive, fun, and physically demanding was our greatest challenge," states Bard McKinley, one of Orbis’ developers. Other project challenges included developing with limited time and manpower, creating a balance between exertion and enjoyment, and unifying game mechanics while allowing for a wide variety of interactions. These issues were dealt with in part through aesthetic choices directed at decreasing asset demand, refinement and simplification of controls, and technical frameworks for rapid prototyping.
Learn how Deep End Interactive were able to create a new gaming experience, Winds of Orbis, and discuss ways in which alternative input might impact games for corporate learning.
Celebrity Calamity: Teaching Personal Finance through Games
Join Enspire Learning as they profile a game project completed in partnership with The Doorways to Dreams Fund (D2D), a non-profit organization with the mission of expanding access to financial services to low-income families by providing innovative financial products and services. D2D partnered with Enspire Learning to create a casual game teaching smart use of debit and credit cards.
D2D’s audience is often targeted by lenders who prey on those in need of immediate cash, but have little experience or access to traditional banking services. Lack of experience leads them to frequent cash advance and check cashing services which charge high fees and do not encourage savings. The challenge was creating a learning experience that addressed foundational financial concepts in a memorable way, without patronizing the audience.
The goal of Celebrity Calamity is to maintain the finances of three consumption-crazy celebrities, while also keeping them satisfied to avoid getting fired. Each round, users move their avatar across the screen, catching falling wish list items as well as cash to deposit into the bank account. Then, players decide whether to pay for caught items with a credit or debit card. If credit card charges are made, the player must decide how to pay off the balance-minimum payment, full payment, or somewhere in between. The APR on the credit card changes frequently, which requires players to adjust their spending and payment habits.
Each celebrity has a mood meter that tracks their satisfaction with the player’s spending habits. If they buy too little or too much, or accumulate too much debt, the celebrity will grow unhappy and possibly fire the player. The game consists of 45 short rounds, each representing one month, that progress in difficulty.
The game’s explicit learning objectives include:
- Paying more than the minimum credit card payment;
- Minimizing credit card finance charges;
- Avoiding all fees including bank overdraft, credit card late payment, and credit card over-limit;
- Making good annual percentage rate (APR) choices.
Celebrity Calamity also includes a number of implicit learning objectives, such as raising awareness of spending behavior and the value of saving money.
Experience Celebrity Calamity with Enspire Learning as they address challenges, techniques, best practices and outcomes related to the project.
Lakeview Change Management Simulation
Heath care leaders from across Ontario’s health system including hospital CEO’s, Chiefs of Staff, Chief Nursing Officers, Physicians, Nurses, Ambulance workers and others are adopting LEAN management practices to reduce hospital wait times.
The adoption of LEAN is faced with resistance among a variety of stakeholders and this resistance is a significant barrier to adoption. The ability of health care leaders to align their organizations behind a new way of doing things and then to effectively execute the change is critical to the success of LEAN or any new initiative. For LEAN to be successfully implemented, a wide variety of health care professionals must learn how to be effective leaders of change.
ExperiencePoint and the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto engaged in an innovative partnership model to create a simulation tailored to the client need, but based on their existing work together for simulations in executive education.
The goals of the simulation are to teach a best practice model for change and provide an opportunity for teams to apply the change model to a concrete project example.
See why ExperiencePoint’s change management simulations have been used by over 50,000 leaders around the world and have been demonstrated to be very effective at engaging and teaching executives best practices around change management. Learn about the agile development methodology that facilitated frequent client input and updates throughout the process and how costs were controlled through the use of ExperiencePoint’s Express development toolset which facilitated client authorship of content.
US Sales and Marketing Policy Simulation
Compliance is a large part of training and development in health care and especially in the pharmaceutical industry. Humentum created a simulation for Shering Plough in an effort to affect skill development as well as behavior change, rather than focusing only on the standard knowledge deployment of most compliance training programs.
Given that a lot of compliance issues are not black and white, gaining experience in making decisions helps employees in the field be more aware and sensitive to doing things appropriately. To provide participants with experience in exercising judgment in compliance issues, Humentum created a simulation that articulates good scenarios that are both relevant and recognizable to participants so that they can see the issues in action and learn from their experience-based consequences.
Join Humentum as they profile the simulation project and discuss their design methodology for creating simulations, rapid prototyping approaches and their use of standard PMI project management tools for simulation design and development.
Health Education Games
JPL worked with the Susan Byrnes Health Education Center to base health education games on the PA State Standards for K-12 education. The health education games are an effort to increase the center’s reach outside their physical location in York to schools and classrooms throughout PA. The online games provide an easy-to-access, low technology solution to augment classroom teachers’ lesson plans and activities.
JPL’s case study session will address:
- The process we use to match game format and instructional content
- The importance of understanding how the game will be played and scored
- The use of feedback to personalize the gaming experience
- Repurposing of games to reduce costs/programming issues
Hands-on and interactive discussion opportunities will focus on:
- Brainstorming sessions with creative team/client
- Use of a programming template to handle navigation, media playback
- A quality assurance (QA) process to ensure program functions meet proposed game play/content issues
- The creation of a custom development team based on demonstrated skill sets
Essential Leadership Simulation Series
Developed in conjunction with NexLearn, the Essential Leadership series has become one of Harvard Business Publishing’s (HBP) leading products and the generational diversity (Leading Across the Ages) simulation has been extremely successful.
HBP and NexLearn worked collaboratively using HBPs quality assurance system and NexLearn’s SimWriter simulation development software to cost effectively create a scalable solution that meet the needs of generationally diverse learners. The simulations are fast, flexible, focused, interactive learning experiences centered on real-life scenarios.
Experience a number of the simulations from the series and talk with NexLearn about training the HBP staff on the simulation development process, the benefits of a centralized quality assurance function and bandwidth challenges in an open access environment. Tools and processes used to reduce design and development time will also be discussed.
University of Maryland University College
Criminal Justice Simulations
Face-to-face Criminal Justice classes at UMUC normally include a class visit to a crime scene for experiential learning. But, online classes in the Criminal Justice program cannot rely on real-time student-instructor interactions or crime scene visits. In either case, it’s difficult to move beyond simple, rote knowledge testing and test students’ ability to apply the knowledge.
To demonstrate the desired skills students must apply knowledge from various fields, including physical/trace evidence, forensic biology/pathology, bloodstain interpretation and more, all applied at once in a realistic situation.
The simulation solution provides an online crime scene analysis, accessible for face-to-face and online students in a non-threatening environment where they can make mistakes as they begin to apply a variety of knowledge from classes.
Interact with presenters from the University of Maryland as they describe the benefits of using the online simulation in Criminal Justice classes and the challenges of designing, developing and implementing the online simulation.
- Students practice and apply the cumulative knowledge acquired throughout the course.
- The simulation is reused within a single course, so students can practice different facets of the same situation again, improving based on knowledge gained within the course
- Educational achievement is documented in a coherent, engaging, active learning object
- A non-traditional approach to distance learning is achieved
- The simulation does not replace the instructor, but is integrated as a teaching and learning tool with guidance from the instructor
- Project scope was not in line with available resources and the project time frame
- Installation issues with an initial 3D version of the simulation developed in Maya
- Collaboration between content experts, graphic artists, programmers and reviewers
Attendees will also engage with the presenters to create a game concept as part of the session.
US Army War College
Military Global Distribution Game
Army War College faculty uses the Military Global Distribution game to compliment classroom-based Systems Thinking curriculum. The game allows students to experience the dynamics of being part of a system first-hand and to extrapolate lessons form that experience.
The Military Global Distribution Game is a representation of a four-tiered commodity distribution chain where each link in the system has a limited view of the entire system and must make decisions with incomplete (local) information.
The US Army War College will profile their use of the game and provide insight into the challenges of conducting faculty training on game implementation and running multiple games at one time to accommodate class sizes.
You’ll have a chance to set up the gaming experience like faculty at the War College do by logging into the game server to create specific details of a game series (number of weeks to run, demand per week, name and password). Then experience the game as a student might by logging into the game and playing in one of four roles (Retailer, Wholesaler, Distributor or Factory).
Discussion will revolve around the effectiveness of the game in achieving a better understanding of the impact of systems and the game’s use as a supplement to classroom instruction.
Developing Entrepreneurship with Serious Games
Join ViaVivo, Inc.as they profile a game project created as part of the Acton MBA curriculum. The primary audience is students entering the Acton MBA program, however the games are designed to be useful for a broad audience of teens and adults interested in developing entrepreneurial skills.
The program provides hands-on simulations of real-world entrepreneurial challenges to increase transfer and retention of key concepts and in order to prepare students for deeper classroom experiences and career success.
Each game is balanced for optimal play. In order to keep players engaged, the games offer the appropriate level of challenge to match a players’ skill. Otherwise players may become frustrated (game is too hard) or bored (game is too easy). In addition, as the player’s skill increases, each game becomes increasingly challenging to keep the player in the optimal flow state. Through the development of 5 games for this target audience, an increasingly agile testing process was developed, resulting in varying levels of difficulty, and adjusted game data as needed to make the games useful and enjoyable. An xml data framework was developed for the project that makes adjusting game data and business logic a quick and simple process.
Experience this series of games geared toward developing entrepreneurship with ViaVIvo, Inc. as they address challenges, techniques, best practices and outcomes related to the project.
Visual Purple, LLC
Winning in Wireless, CEO Simulation in a Virtual World
See Visual Purple’s consistent virtual world, a proprietary combination of tools and techniques, in action. Visual Purple’s case study will focus on converting and applying conventional computer-based training (CBT) into a virtual world.
The project centers on practicing management decision making skills in a virtual world. By successfully navigating challenges in the virtual world, the learner gains critical insight and knowledge about the role of management and why decision making, strategic and financial forecasting and adherence to company vision, values and mission is important. The case study will provide insight into best practices for converting conventional CBT to a virtual world environment and illustrate how key skills can be taught while simultaneously providing functional cross-training and developing understanding of the roles and skills of others within an organization.
Visual Purple’s consistent virtual world provides a private and secure, asynchronous environment with advanced questing. There are options for browser-based deployment, multiplayer deployment, behavioral and synthetic intelligence implementation and LTMS configuration for tracking and/or deployment.
Join Visual Purple as they outline their procedures and practices and demonstrate a case study about improving managerial situational awareness for decision making aligned with corporate vision, objectives and strategy.
LEEF was an interactive professional development event that explored the use of games, simulations and virtual worlds for learning. The program showcased how learning and entertainment technologies have converged, and continue to evolve, to produce new, immersive solutions that are redefining the learning experience.