Lauren Hays, @Lib_Lauren, Instructional and Research Librarian, Mid-America Nazarene University
Mark Hayse, PhD, Director, Honors Program, Mid-America Nazarene University
“Center for Games & Learning” at Mid-America Nazarene University
Faculty and Librarian Collaboration, Relationships
“If it wasn’t for the library staff inviting me into a grant-seeking brainstorming session, this center would have never gone off the ground. The library facilitated the interaction” -Dr. Mark Hayse
Grant bought video games
- Build strong professional relationships with colleagues
- Needs assessment
- Connections bw library & teaching & learning — intersection bw role of librarians & scholarship of teaching
- Scholarship and librarian intersection — esp critical at smaller institutions, like MNU
- Outreach to campus community — game nights at MNU Library; a lot of the faculty are gamers
- Outreach to educational community — campus community; broader educational community, schools K-12, inservice days for teachers, sharing findings
- Outreach to library community — conference summer of 2015; another conference/workshop, Friday July 29, 2016 will be another event on Games & Learning
- Build a community of practice — 11 faculty letters of support for the grant; 9 became part of the cohort and used games in their classrooms. And case study happened — does games help build 21st century skills in the classroom? Still gathering data for that.
- Community–$7500 games purchased from this grant & other sources, too — if the games sit on shelf and do no good, only by outreach are we going to be able to get people in to use the games; consistently, positively evangelize to stakeholders; it wasn’t build it & they will come; it was go out on the street
- University strategic plan
- experiential learning
- student success
- learning outcomes
- Library strategic plan
- physical space
Grant covered 5 percent of Lauren’s time, but it was more than 5 percent of her time. Library director was supportive of work, and was supportive of the outreach efforts. A lot of balancing of schedules had to happen to keep the library running. A lot of calendar sharing and a lot of communicating. The games center outreach has taken up the most time; the other outreach is more liaison roles. The center took on a life of its own; a lot of faculty came in to help, students facilitated gameplay. Cohort got involved. Library was hospitable, coordinated, launched, and let it take off.
- Games are fun
- Today’s learning want to explore new ideas socially & playfully
- Effective learning for 21st century leadership demands expertise in skills such as communication, problem solving, flexibility, creativity, and innovation
- Experiential learning
Some games used in classes
- Balderdash — info lit class; definition writing & info lit skills
- Diplomacy — history; collaboration
- Tobago — critical thinking; communication; collaboration
- World through the ages — semester long class taught through interpreting history in table top games; putting the cards in order; more complicated, bc you’re not on your own, if you play in twos, but many skills built: you have to think together and work together and have more fun.
The cohort was a lot of fun — to talk about what worked well; what didn’t; share ideas. Play games with the professors prior to classes, to make sure the game would work the way professor thought it would.
A lot of students’ comments and experiences related back to info lit skills, things that were being said.
Why Tabletop Games
- More accessible than digital games
- They have a longer lifespan than digital games
- limited budget
Dr. Hayse dissertation on Education, Religion, and Videogames and Curriculum
Videogames are hard to facilitate in a class of 30 students… Tabletop games much easier.
We live in a highly interactive culture; games help us think more culturally and effectively. We can’t be passive recipients of information, must be active participants.
The tech doesn’t get in the way of learning
- Recreation – popular; fun
- Academic Support
- Discussions w faculty or community
- What can be played during a class setting
- 21st century skills
- Discipline-specific games — a history prof was already using games in a class. Reacting to the past history methodology (lots of gaming tendencies here)
- Two week check out period
- Count all game pieces as the games are returned — student workers responsible
- Not available for loaning outside the system — local teachers can request
- Games can be placed on hold
- If a piece gets lost, can contact the company of the game, and request replacement pieces; ordered extra game pieces with grant funds; handled the same way as damaged books
- Haven’t laminated the boxes — not too many issues so far
- List included in the box of all the pieces — also in the instructions
Replacement parts ideas
- buy set of blank cards from Amazon; photo copy what you need
- Multi-colored 10mm cube manipulatives
- Multi-colored poker chips
- Pound of dice — 120 dice, multi-sided
- 3-D printer to print replacement game pieces
Hosting Game Nights
- Fridays, 7pm-10pm — after the library closes at 6pm
- Done once on a diff night, and attracted a different crowd
- Once a month
- Averaged 50 attendees
- Students, faculty, staff
- Work closely with student government and residential life
- Find those in your community that will “champion” the cause
- Game “approved” snacks
In November, International Games Day, November 21
Quality over Quantity — numbers don’t matter as much with these nights. Students got involved and participated
Student Govt & Res Life helped market. Find those on campus who will be champions for your cause
Multiple copies of some games bought for curricular support; also been great for games night — 3 games — multiple copies.
At another library — 50 choices offered, slowed down the start. Fewer games the better the event goes.
Setting games up in advance; cart out with other options, too.
First game night — 5 copies of 5 games to be used and promoted. Unrealistic to think 5 groups of people play the same game at the same time.
2-3 copies of a game has seemed to meet the needs of the MNU community (800-900 res students)
Games in Library; Local Games Store, borrowing, to see what to purchase; Gamers Guild brings over games, too
Has anyone tried to create a new game? A couple of professors are budding game developers; Scott Nicholson, … Game building is iterative, testing. Gaming Guild. Game Jam — JCCC & JoCoLibrary & MNU social justice gaming.
Recommendations gathered by faculty & students over time
Game Design for Education — bought games too long to play; complicated. Need games that are simpler, watch out for boardgamegeek.com — index games, but watch out for the times reco
thedicetower.com – top 10 lists of games for general users
The League of Librarian Gamers Facebook group recommended
Center for Games & Learning Contact Info
Next summer’s conference will focus on the How Games in Learning