I recently successfully finished my first massive open online course (MOOC). It was the 6-week Gamification course on the new Coursera platform, presented by Kevin Werbach of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. It wasn’t the first MOOC I’d ever started but it was different in its underlying approach than the others. This post contextualizes the Coursera MOOC platform prior to discussing whether it succeeds or not in a later post.
Back in March 2011, I gave an invited keynote at the JISC Scotland/Consolarium Game To Learn: Take 2 conference in Dundee, Scotland. The abstract read:All you need to understand is everything you know is wrong.
My mother told me cleaning toilets builds character if done repeatedly. The other night five friends spent more than three hours dying over and over again while playing World of Warcraft (WoW). She never said anything about dying. I found cleaning toilets only gets you clean toilets. Dying and playing, however, teaches you important things. Demons, dragons, dwarves, and possibly folklore, you could see, but learning, love, and leadership?
Sounds crazy, but it’s true: World of Warcraft has something to say about learning. Prepare yourself, because everything you thought you knew is wrong.
The talk went very well and the slides were available shortly after the talk via SlideShare, but I was somewhat remiss in preparing a version for my blogs. This version was originally posted on my WoW Learning Project site.
You have a choice of formats:
- The original slides (slightly cleaned up) via SlideShare.
- The original slides and notes (slightly cleaned up) via SlideShare.
- A downloadable PDF version of this blog post (from copy at WoWLearning).
- This blog post.
This post is a written version of the original talk with the more important slide graphics incorporated. It can therefore be read without the original slides. Enjoy! If you have any comments, feel free to leave them.
I have my annual Ph.D. review meeting tomorrow afternoon. As usual, I’m more than a bit nervous, especially as I made the big step this academic year of completely dropping my former Ph.D. work and starting a brand new topic that intersects the boundaries of my three main interests: communities, learning and teaching, and Internet-enabled technologies. As part of the review process, we’re asked to produce a 4-page report that explains what we’ve done since the last report. In your first year, this report ought to focus on your thesis proposal, although many students won’t yet have one. I do have some ideas about what I want to do and how I am going to go about it. I’ve made an online version so that it will be indexed and easily findable by others interested in World of Warcraft and e-learning.
The 30-second summary: Examine how metaphors and game design of World of Warcraft motivate people to learn and to work, with an eye to transferring motivation, social knowledge building, and persistence to online higher education practices, like community building for lifelong learning.
Click the “More” link below to continue reading the online version of the proposal and progress report. A downloadable PDF version is also available.