My project(s)

Andy helping David explain his game.
Andy helping David explain his game.


I am on a digital humanities tear this summer, and I started by attending the Digital Humanities Summer Institute at the University of Victoria; my course was on games and particularly on digital games.  I signed up for the class thinking that I would produce a digital game for my students in the interdisciplinary humanities course and/or the art history survey.  My group did come up with a digital interactive library game called, I think, Zombies in the Library; Zombies are students who do nothing but sleep in the library. And I learned a lot during the week and brainstormed some great stuff including the idea of using rubrics as a form of game playing, but the biggest thing I learned was to temper my expectations.

Which is a long way of saying that my project(s) for this seminar may or may not be realistic. One of the projects for my summer and fall is to produce four digital interactive modules for my students. And I thought I would start that process of development here both by listening to what others are doing and by viewing some of the modules already published. The Art History Teaching Resources site looks to be very helpful in this regard. I am sorry that I had to miss the Games + Learning + Society conference at University of Wisconsin Madison and the pre-conference play with ARIS, but I intend to go next year, since I am also interested in writing a module for my Language and Landscape course for students to develop their own map of local, sustainable gardens in the Chicago area and another map on the language distribution across Chicago. (The two are not disparate; one of the assignments is for the students to collect the names of the plants in their garden and compare / contrast the language used by other gardeners.)

Another project on the radar is the e-portfolio, particularly as it might represent students’ work across their full time at Wright College and the way it might demonstrate achievements in certain general education competencies, such as writing, close reading, technological literacy. I have students use a collaborative wiki site for each class, and students that I teach at DePaul have access to individual e-portfolios, but Wright has nothing at this point close to an e-portfolio. And even my DePaul students don’t use it in the most robust way: they rarely show the growth, for instance, in their conceptualization and demonstration of critical thinking through writing, but instead just post their “best” papers.

Yet, I also have to think about the resources available at my institution and for my institution and for my students and for me. The administration has suggested applying for various grants, and that too is something I’d like to explore during this seminar, particularly start-up monies for small projects with collaboration across institutions and disciplines. But, again, my institution doesn’t really have much real experience in this regard, and we all may need to rein in our desires.

Source: My project(s)