The Institute of Digital Games has published an exploratory case study that examines non-formal and informal learning practices for science learning, authored by post-doctoral researcher in game-based learning Dr. Iro Voulgari and Prof. Georgios Yannakakis.
The case study uses a qualitative approach to identify aspects involved in the non-formal and informal learning practices such as the content, the goals, the pedagogical approaches, the settings, the role of fun and playfulness, challenges, and the role of the practitioner. The researchers collected data using both interviews and a survey. Interestingly, the researchers found a convergence in themes such as the objectives of the practices, the pedagogical approaches involved, and the importance of fun. This was found despite the diversity in the formats, settings, structure, and target groups examined in the study.
The article was published as part of the proceedings of the International Conference on Games and Learning Alliance in 2019 offers some insight into the possibilities of informal and non-formal game-based learning. It is linked to research conducted under the EU funded Horizon 2020 ComNPLay Project.
The Institute of Digital Games does a number of research projects related to game-based learning. The eCrisis website hosts a number of tools and guidebooks for educators to use in their classrooms. Other projects such as the Envisage Project have developed virtual labs that can be used in classrooms. Furthermore games developed by our researchers have found their way into classrooms as well. Prof. Stefano Gualeni’s Something Something Soup Something being used to teach linguistic concepts in line with Wittgenstein and HERE being used to cover the topic of indexicality. On the other hand, Data Agent, jointly developed by New York University and the Institute of Digital Games, involving Dr. Antonios Liapis is able to offer an education twist by virtue of extracting real facts from Wikipedia to generate the content for the game, similar to early data games in the style of Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?