Context in source publication
... MMOs, individuals engage in collaborative problem solving as a key component of regular gameplay. Here, groups of five or more players join together to tackle problems more challenging than one person alone could typically solve. For example, in World of Warcraft, players regularly enter "instances" or "raids" together to battle monsters of various sorts while making their way through, say, a dungeon or a jungle outpost (see Figure 3). Such gameplay is called "instancing" or "raiding" since, as the game is designed, the software renders the chosen area of the world as a single instance that only those members of the group can access, thereby allowing them to proceed through the game content without interruption from other players within the game space. What is curious about such activities is not the software's rendering of the content per se but rather the way in which such groups function in order to succeed. Specifically, in such endeavors, a core group takes the given task or project through completion from planning through to follow-up, functioning only on a semi-permanent basis by dissolving once the goal is completed. The group is comprised of individuals from different functional areas (for example, a healer versus a damage-dealer) yet redundancy or overlap is built into such configurations so that, should any one person need assistance, another group member is able to take up the proverbial slack. Instancing groups (or raid parties) are self- managed, with a group goal (e.g., completion of the given dungeon area) yet individual accountability (e.g., the healer must successfully heal or risk policing of their behaviors if not outright removal from the group). Such structural features are important, as they not only describe collaborative problem solving within the game but also, as luck might have it, collaborative problem-solving within many contemporary workplace settings. They are, in fact, cross-functional teams (Fredericks, & De Lia, 2005;Lindborg, 1997;Michalski, 2005;Parker, 2002) -a key feature of many of today's "new capitalist" corporate workplaces such as those found in global financing or technology. In effect, the structures of collaboration found in online games parallels the structure of collaboration that increasingly marks high-end workplaces. While it seems counter-intuitive that running instances with joint problem-solving groups in the context of a game might train an individual for teamwork in today's workplace, the similarities between the two forms of collaboration are quite striking and therefore warrant further ...
The aim of this research was to explore expert practitioner views on the viability of a national foundational restraint skillset. The case for and against is outlined.
... Researchers interested in learning and collaboration have recently turned their attention to online games and virtual worlds. Following Gee's (2003) observations that many video games and multiplayer online games provide compelling examples of computer-supported collaborative learning, researchers have begun to examine aspects of this learning such as cross-functional teams (Steinkuehler et al. 2007) or peer-to-peer learning (Nardi et al. 2007). Our research connects to these efforts but moves them into a different context, that of virtual worlds. ...
Prior studies have shown how knowledge diffusion occurs in classrooms and structured small groups around assigned tasks yet have not begun to account for widespread knowledge sharing in more native, unstructured group settings found in online games and virtual worlds. In this paper, we describe and analyze how an insider gaming practice spread across a group of tween players ages 9-12 years in an after-school gaming club that simultaneously participated in a virtual world called Whyville.net. In order to understand how this practice proliferated, we followed the club members as they interacted with each other and members of the virtual world at large. Employing connective ethnography to trace the movements in learning and teaching this practice, we coordinated data records from videos, tracking data, field notes, and interviews. We found that club members took advantage of the different spaces, people, and times available to them across Whyville, the club, and even home and classroom spaces. By using an insider gaming practice, namely teleporting, rather than the more traditional individual person as our analytical lens, we were able to examine knowledge sharing and diffusion across the gaming spaces, including events in local small groups as well as encounters in the virtual world. In the discussion, we address methodological issues and design implications of our findings.
... Recent conference symposia, papers and journal articles within the CSCL community have demonstrated keen interest in learning from students' everyday out-of-school socio-technical practices about how to better develop future technology-powered contexts for learning (Barron, 2006;Fields & Kafai, 2007;Forte & Bruckman, 2008;Gardner & Kolodner, 2007;Halverson, 2007;Miyake et al., 2007;Peppler & Kafai, 2007;Steinkuehler, 2007;Yardi & Perkel, 2007). One example of this include Steinkuehler's research on online game-playing "in the wild," a goal of which is to inform the design of intentioned learning environments in school and after-school contexts. ...
In this paper I introduce a youth-initiated practice: online social networking that is transforming our society in important ways and has vast implications for learning research and education. I introduce the social and technical features that characterize social networking systems and outline results from emerging research that suggests the social and intellectual practices in which participants naturally engage and how these relate to the competencies increasingly valued in formal education. Next, I discuss one research projects which I am currently pursuing that build on early work and suggest how educational programs might employ such practices to advantage. Finally, I discuss what I see as the educative value of this technology in certain contexts and suggest a course for future research and development. My overall goals are to inform other researchers interested in pursuing similar projects and to stimulate interdisciplinary conversation about where such agendas fit within and advance the aims of CSCL.
Multiplayer online games, such as Minecraft, have the potential to be powerful sites for youth learning, but can be plagued by inter-personal conflicts. This brings the need for online moderation. However, only very little is known about the practices through which such moderation happens, or how socio-technical systems could be designed to enable 'safe' learning spaces online. To start addressing this gap, our research examines the existing mediation practices within a moderated Minecraft server for children aged 8-13. As part of our 14 months long engagement, we triangulate data from participant observation, interviews, and analysis of server logs. We demonstrate how---in trying to 'keep peace'---the online moderators monopolised the conflict resolution process, essentially preventing the children from actively working with and learning from the experiences of conflict. In response to these findings, we present an alternative framework for online conflict mediation, suggesting ways in which existing conflict resolution techniques originating in Prevention Science could be re-interpreted for online multiplayer settings
We present CADament, a gamified multiplayer tutorial system for learning AutoCAD. Compared with existing gamified software tutorial systems, CADament generates engaging learning experience through competitions. We investigate two variations of our game, where over-the-shoulder learning was simulated by providing viewports into other player's screens. We introduce an empirical lab study methodology where participants compete with one another, and we study knowledge transfer effects by tracking the migration of strategies between players during the study session. Our study shows that CADament has an advantage over pre-authored tutorials for improving learners' performance, increasing motivation, and stimulating knowledge transfer.
We analyze the logs of an online mathematics game tournament, played simultaneously by thousands of students. Nearly 10,000 students, coming from 356 schools from all regions in Chile, registered to the fourth tournament instance. The children play in teams of 12 students from the same class, and send their personal bets to a central server every 2 minutes. Each competition lasts about one clock hour and takes place within school hours. Students are pre-registered and trained by their school teacher. The teacher is responsible for reviewing curriculum contents useful for improving performance at the game and coaches students participating in trial tournaments taking place a few weeks before the national tournament. All bets are recorded in a database that enables us to analyze later the sequence of bets made by each student. Using cluster analysis with this information, we have identified three types of players, each with a well-defined strategy.