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Pervasive Game Design as an Artificial Teaching and Research Method

Pervasive Game Design as an Artificial Teaching and Research Method
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Author(s): Steffen Walz (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Switzerland) and Odilo Schoch (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Switzerland)
Copyright: 2007
Pages: 11
Source title: Games and Simulations in Online Learning: Research and Development Frameworks
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): David Gibson (University of Vermont, USA), Clark Aldrich (SimuLearn Inc., USA) and Marc Prensky (games2train, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-304-3.ch012


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Today and in the future, architectural students must be prepared for designing both physical and adaptive, computer-integrated, that is: “hybrid reality” spaces. The question is: How do we easily and effectively convey architecturally relevant theories and practices of pervasive computing in teaching? In this paper, we present an instructional model that is a possible answer. During a semester-long design class, we supervised an interdisciplinary group of architecture and computer science students who worked together on a serious pervasive game prototype, which we will refer to as “ETHGame”. The class culminated in a two-week intensive workshop and a presentation before school executives involved in strategic e-learning projects. The resulting interactive prototype takes advantage of our university’s extensive wireless local area network infrastructure (> 250 access points), allowing for player geo-positioning, location-based learning and servicing, as well as mediated communication. ETHGame transforms the school’s campus into a knowledge space, with key locations issuing position dependent and position relevant questions to players. ETHGame involves participants in an academic quiz by the way of a given university place, rewarding them for collaborating both face-to-face and Online. The game helps players build a collective academic and spatiotemporal identity whilst being immersed in a sentient environment. Thus, in this chapter we introduce serious pervasive game design as a novel design, research, and teaching paradigm for Computer Aided Architectural Design (CAAD), as well as an e-learning design strategy.

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