UMSI collaborators produce book on designing online educational games

Karen Markey

Professor Karen Markey, associate professor Soo Young Rieh and doctoral candidate Chris Leeder are co-authors of Designing Online Information Literacy Games Students Want to Play, published in March 2014 by Rowman and Littlefield.

The 302-page book explores the promise of utilizing games to motivate and teach students in educational settings.

The authors describe their experiences in designing the BiblioBouts information literacy game, which has been deployed in dozens of college classrooms across the country, and their evaluations of its effectiveness for teaching students how to conduct library research. Drawing on the evaluation, the authors describe how students played this particular information literacy game and make recommendations for the design of future information literacy games.

The game’s design evolved in response to student input. The authors describe how students played the game, including their attitudes about playing games to develop information literacy skills and concepts specifically and playing educational games generally. They also describe how students benefited as a result of playing the game.

Based upon their own first-hand experience, research, and networking, the authors feature best practices that educators and game designers in Library and Information Science specifically and other educational fields generally need to know so that they build classroom games that students want to play.

Soo Young Rieh
Chris Leeder

Best practices topics covered include pre-game instruction, rewards, feedback, the ability to review/change actions, ideal timing, and more.

Book Reviews on
“The best practices in this book would be valuable to someone new to the surprisingly complex world of designing information literacy games in a school environment. Librarians and educators can avoid falling into the trap of creating a quiz wrapped in a bad educational game shell by following the advice and examples in the book.” (Scott Nicholson, Because Play Matters game lab, Syracuse University School of Information Studies)

“This is an excellent resource for librarians, teachers, designers, and others interested in creating digital games to teach students how to locate, select, and evaluate high quality information resources for academic use. Of particular interest are the sets of best practices for game design and game support, enabling readers to learn valuable lessons from the authors’ own design and testing experiences.”  (Denise E. Agosto, Associate Professor, The College of Computing & Informatics, Drexel University)

Posted on Tuesday, APril 29, 2014