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Game Studies Course #4: Objectives

Game Studies Course #4: Objectives

Game Studies Course #4: Objectives

A major component required for course approval at Taylor University, and most universities, is the Course Objectives. These objectives define the purpose of the course and what outcomes students can expect to achieve upon successful completion of the course. With the early concepts of the Game Studies course being very tabletop game centric, the early drafts of the Game Design course syllabus included objectives that were very limited to that scope.

Original Game Design Course Objectives:

  • To understand the underlying history and philosophies of games.
  • To understand basic game theory and the math behind it.
  • To understand the process involved in designing and producing games.
  • To understand the current game industry including publishing, distribution, marketing, and events.
  • To learn from game industry professionals
  • To produce a game prototype

As you can see upon reading those six items, the Game Studies course was very applied and technical. There was not as much research, analysis or critical study within those objectives. Lacking those elements is what limited the original Game Design course and kept it from being approved. The University was interested in more breadth and academic study within a course such as this. Dr. Jon Denning and I took a step back and re-imagined the course as a hybrid of Tabletop and Digital games and as an overview of gaming as an academic study. We researched other similar courses offered at other universities around the world. Some of the courses we researched were focused on game theory, others specifically on digital game design, a few focused only on tabletop games, but what really drew our attention were the hybrid courses.  They seemed to be true overviews of gaming as a study and would really challenge and interest students at Taylor. With this research completed, the course objectives expanded and included many more new elements. You will see quite a few repeated elements from the original Game Design course, because the core of that course has been absorbed into this broader Game Studies course.  The current draft of the syllabus has these objectives.

Updated Game Studies Course Objectives (August 2015 Draft):

  • To understand the underlying history and philosophies of games.
  • To understand basic game theory and the mathematics behind it.
  • To understand the mechanics and characteristics of games.
  • To utilize critical analysis.
  • To understand the process involved in designing and producing games.
  • To utilize the system design process.
  • To utilize the iterative design process.
  • To understand the impact of gamification on society and commerce.
  • To understand the interaction of faith and gaming.
  • To learn from game industry professionals.
  • To produce a game prototype.

Dr. Denning and I continue to finalize elements of the course and formalize the course syllabus, and these Course Objectives guide our decisions. Before we open this course to registrations, we might make some minor tweaks to these objectives. If so, I will share those in future posts. For now, understand that our choice of textbook(s), course assignments, course game labs, course projects, and rubrics are all being developed with these Course Objectives in mind.

 


 

 

Side Question: Can you identify game tiles used to create the header image for this post?

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