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Published November 1st, 2010

Category News

By Charles Hendee

Can you make this fun?

Are games the future of learning? Can you make an entire school curriculum into a learning game and still make it fun? Willplayers be able to apply what they learn to new problems long after the game has ended? Can the samegame benefit players of different abilities and levels of knowledge?

Teachers, principals, and school administrators are starting to ask these questions, and there is growing demand for effective games for learning. One of the key academic subjects that many believe could be made into a game is basic geometry for 6th graders, which includes skills like solving for the missing angle in a triangle and finding perimeter, area, and surface area of simple shapes. But is it possible to make this fun?

The Games for Learning Institute (G4LI), research partner Microsoft Research, and Motorola think it is and are challenging developers to create such learning games through the 2010 Games for Learning Design Competition. Contestants will create and submit their own game for learning basic sixth grade geometry.

Entrants will choose five New York state standards that their game will address, and then create a learning game to teach those standards and demonstrate that the learning goal was achieved. The first-place winner will be awarded $5,000. Cash prizes will also be awarded to 2nd through 5th place winners.

Update: To reach all relevant communities of game designers, G4LI is extending the deadline to enter the game design competition. The contest is open to the general public. Entries are due January 12, 2011 (11:59 p.m. EST). For more information about how to register, game design requirements, and judging details, please email or call 212.998.3342.

Select entrants will have the opportunity to demo their games to professional game researchers and designers at the Games for Learning Design Competition Expo to be held on January 30, 2011, 2-4 p.m. at NYU’s Kimmel Center for University Life, Room 914 (60 Washington Square South at LaGuardia Place).

Register by:                                                                   January 12, 2010

Game Submission Deadline:                                         January 12, 2011


Use the following directions to guide your submission to the game design contest.  Additional information is contained in sections later on in this document.

  1. Read Official Rules
  2. Register Your Team
  3. Choose 5 Standards
  4. Review Sample Test
  5. Study the Scoring Rubric to See How Judges Will Assess Your Game
  6. Design an Awesome Game Around the Standards You Selected

  7. Demo Your Game at the Games for Learning Design Competition Expo on January 30, 2011 at NYU Where Winners Will Be Announced