Friday, August 17, 2012

(7) Week 2 Friday flick: Games in Learning + Twitter example

This week we are watching the TED talk "7 ways games reward the brain" by Tom Chatfield about the role of game mechanics in learning.


Step 1: Watch the video (16 mins) (Hit the bottom right full screen button if you wish to see it larger.)
Step 2: Chat about it with someone or write down your response (including if it is violent disapproval!)

Step 3a: Post a comment below this blog and/OR..
Step 3b: Tweet a response - and include the hashtag #SENSDeakin so we can all see it.


Example Tweet:
Watched @TomChatfield TED talk on game mechanics Interesting ideas for teaching stats #SENSDeakin

Explanation: you are saying: "the TED talk by Tom Chatfield at this address is interesting". And you are sending it to all your followers, plus those following the #SENSDeakin topic.
  • @TomChatfield - Tom Chatfield's name or "handle" on Twitter. I looked this up on Google.
  • The web address you paste in there will be automatically shortened by most Twitter programs like TweetDeck
  • # is hashtag. It sends the Tweet to people following that topic.
  • #SENSDeakin is the specific hashtag we are using for the school Twitter topic. If you search for it on Twitter you will find tweets from some people in the school already!
  • If you add #yam your tweet will go into Yammer automatically (if you think it's of interest to people there).
In fact, I did Tweet the above Tweet,  and here it is:


And for your extra Weekend amusement, you may wish to have a look at this Twitter graphic from the And Far Away blog :-)


  1. Thanks Susie - interesting clip on many levels. First time I have heard anyone other than Gie talking about wanting and liking as different things!! Like the discussion towards the end about reward - biggest reward is other people, doing stuff with peers, watching and collaborating. Started to make more sense when that came into the mix. Hard to know where to go with this - great idea, very convincing, what do we do in practice? Tom is talking gaming in media sense, but simple games could also be as useful, nothing complicated, easily incorporated into our existing learning spaces - clickers, polling in elive are maybe simple examples. I am sure others have more examples and I suspect some of our sport folk are already onto this? Lynn

    1. Yes great point Lynn about the benefits of even simple types of games we can use to engage students - the challenge of a task to do or problem to solve is already more interesting than just listening for a long time.

      I also like your comment about the reward of connection - often we only think of competition in games. But many online games require sophisticated planning and cooperation by large numbers of people over some time. It is interesting how we can use game mechanics to encourage collaboration, networking, connecting. One school rewards students in part based on the progress of the whole class so that students are encouraged to look out for each other and support everyone's progress. Then intrinsic motivation kicks in as the mentor and mentee share the joy of success.

  2. Hey Susie,
    Great post - I loved your tweet breakdown and explanation. If I'd read something like that earlier it would have been a real code cracker!
    Watched the clip; he's more engaging when his excitement animates him up. 1 billion data points of tracking, and sussing out the workload:reward ratio is fascinating stuff.
    @RiddellLynn there's a bunch of interesting poll apps out there that academics can use (setup and embed in DSO, or setup and share access details live in lectures). The trick will be sharing which ones are free, work best in which scenario, and allow for multiple access methods (answering poll online on own device vs texting answer).
    And a ps. My brother has taught my 4 yr old niece the diff between wanting and needing. She never 'wants' anything nowadays, it's ALWAYS needed, a hilarious development in her verbal expression.

    1. Yes Kris and Lynn I agree, classroom polling is a great way to surface students' attitudes to start off a discussion, ask controversial or tricky questions anonymously, or test the learning before and after the class (scary!).

      One of the free polling tools I have tried is Mentimeter. Very simple to use, and a nice interface. Has anyone used any others?

  3. Very interesting - lots of effective psychological constructs at work here - intermittent reinforcement (open X boxes to get one prize - much more powerful than constant reinforcement); goal-setting; self-monitoring; reward; social support; financial incentives...brings back my undergraduate days!