Games and Game Jams: An Employability-First Approach to Educating Programmers

Scott, Michael (2016) Games and Game Jams: An Employability-First Approach to Educating Programmers. In: Inspire to Succeed: Transforming Teaching and Learning in STEM (HEA), 28-29 January 2016, Nottingham, UK.

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Abstract / Summary

Teamwork and problem solving skills are highly desired within the software development industry. It would be prudent, then, to position these employability skills alongside more traditional technical skills in introductory programming courses. To achieve this, lessons can be drawn from the games development community, which need to prepare students for large-scale interdisciplinary collaboration. Two of which include: the use of games, where students solve puzzles together; and the use of game jams, where students create games together over a short period of time. This session presents two case studies: optimising algorithms in SpaceChem; and making minigames using the Unity game development engine. Prior research is explored and analyses are supported by qualitative and quantitative data drawn from the 2015-16 undergraduate programming cohort at the Falmouth University Games Academy (N=45). The findings illustrate improved employability skills, but challenges including the intensive use of lab resources and inconsistent participation are also highlighted.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Lecture)
Subjects: Computer Science, Information & General Works
Technology > Digital Works > Digital Games
Education
Courses by Department: The School of Film & Television > Games and Animation
Depositing User: Michael Scott
Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2016 09:54
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2016 09:54
URI: http://repository.falmouth.ac.uk/id/eprint/1715

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