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simSchool and the Conceptual Assessment Framework

simSchool and the Conceptual Assessment Framework
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Author(s): David Gibson (, USA)
Copyright: 2007
Pages: 15
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.ch015


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simSchool is a game-based simulation developed with funding from the Preparing Tomorrow’s Teachers to Use Technology (PT3, 2003) program of the United States Department of Education. The simulation provides users with a training environment for developing skills such as lesson planning, differentiating instruction, classroom management, special education, and adapting teaching to multiple cognitive abilities. This chapter uses simSchool as an example to present and discuss an application of the Conceptual Assessment Framework (CAF) of (Almond, Steinberg, & Mislevy, 2002) as a general model for building assessments of what users learn through games and simulations. The CAF organizes the theories of teaching as well as the inferential frameworks in simSchool that are used to provide feedback to players about their levels of knowledge and abilities as teachers. The framework is generally relevant and useful for planning how to assess gains made by users while playing games or using simulations.

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