Back to Blog

A Guide to Game-Based Learning at SXSW EDU 2019

Filament Games | Educational Game Developer

Can you believe it? We’re less than one month away from SXSW EDU 2019!

a99ffd dce19df86e4a42778c1559b8b5b397d5mv2

(Image source: Giphy)

Held each year in Austin, TX from March 4–7, 2019 – the days leading up to famed interactive media, film, and music conference South By Southwest (SXSW) – the future-focused, education-themed event boasts an array of cutting-edge sessions, workshops, competitions, mentorship and networking opportunities, and so much more. Seriously, check out this year’s full event schedule – it’s massive!

With hundreds of sessions, events, and workshops to choose from, it’s easy to become overwhelmed when mapping out your SXSW EDU experience. But have no fear, friends of Filament – to aid in your planning, we’ve assembled the following list of all the game-based learning, esports in education, and AR/VR for learning sessions offered throughout the festival!

Check out the session descriptions below, and let us know what sessions you’ll be attending this year!

Game-Based Learning

Transatlantic Gaming for Higher Ed Student Success (Mar 4, 2019 | 1:30PM – 3:30PM)

Gaming to gain college knowledge draws on the power of games to spark deep, authentic learning. Rather than another workshop, students discover campus programs and services and test time management strategies through play. It’s a chance to learn how to “do college” before being “done in by college.” Presenters from the U.S. and UK will engage attendees in playing the board game, learning about the game development journey, and sharing future mobile game plans.

Speakers: Tricia Seifert (Montana State University), Kirsty Wadsley (London School of Economics)

SEL: Construct Understanding with Gaming & Design (Mar 5, 2019 | 1:30PM – 3:30PM)

In this session, attendees will explore how to use the design-thinking process, gamification, and soft and hard maker materials to help students dive deep into their own social emotional learning, and to guide students to think about their own thinking. Participants will see student work that illustrates a process with clear learning outcomes and walk about with a structure they can use to apply to their own social emotional work with students.

Speakers: Sarah Beebe (Francis W Parker School), Mary Catherine Coleman (Francis W Parker School), Mike McPharlin (Francis W Parker School)

Playful Assessment: Don’t Stop the Fun (Mar 5, 2019 | 1:30PM – 3:30PM)

Why should the fun stop when it’s time for assessment? Learning is becoming more playful and student centered, but assessment has not kept up. Until now! Embedding assessment techniques into playful learning experiences can make students feel comfortable, elicit authentic evidence of skill mastery, and provide actionable information to teachers. In this workshop you will try out some examples of playful assessments, and play around with adapting these ideas to your own teaching.

Speakers: YJ Kim (MIT), Emily Martin (MIT), Louisa Rosenheck (MIT)

Game-Based Training to Build Attention in Children (Mar 5, 2019 | 3:00PM – 3:30PM)

Attention is an early developing cognitive skill, vital to a child’s ability to learn and interact with others. Globally over 130 million children struggle with issues related to inattention. TALI utilizes the convenience and mobility of game-based tablet technology to screen for inattention and strengthen attention with programs that can be delivered at home, at school, or in a clinic. We will explore how TALI digital strategies help children improve attention skills and reach their potential.

Speaker: Glenn Smith (Tali)

(Video)Game Changers for Creative Student Pathways (Mar 5, 2019 | 3:30PM – 4:30PM)

Video games can cultivate STEM connections while nurturing a student’s artistic mindset—building empathy, resilience, and creative confidence. In this moderated panel, explore the unique value of the arts to engage students in civic issues impacting their lives through game design. Hear how industry leaders and educators build capacity to use game-based learning tools across learning spaces. Discover resources to sustain and measure the impact of this dynamic art form on our students!

Speakers: Lakita Edwards (National Endowment for the Arts), Jack McBride (Writers in the Schools (WITS)), Elizabeth Newbury (The Wilson Center), Susanna Pollack (Games for Change)

Fact or Fake: Using Games to Teach Ethics (Mar 6, 2019 | 11:00AM – 1:00PM)

Today’s media environment poses challenges for educators. Led by experts in game design and education, this workshop provides evidence- and game-based tools for educators to help students advance critical thinking and decision-making skills. We’ll discuss classroom challenges about discerning fact from fake, introduce game-based learning frameworks, explore curriculum for ethical skill-building and create flexible lesson plans that incorporate classroom goals and examples from students’ lives.

Speakers: Cathie Gillner (Fox Chapel Area School District / Dorseyville Middle School), Lacey Hilliard (Tufts University), Scot Osterweil (MIT)

Can AAA Games Be Used to Improve Education? (Mar 6, 2019 | 2:00PM – 3:00PM)

Playing video games has become an integral part of mankind’s cultural habits. A huge gap still divides AAA entertainment games from “serious’’ games in terms of appeal and defined learning objectives. Using data and sharing their own in-class experience, the panelists will discuss how AAA games can help advance learning (formal and informal) for students at all stages of their education grade school to college. What are some key strengths and limitations of using AAA games in the classroom?

Speakers: Simone Bregni (Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures – Saint Louis University), Maxime Durand (Ubisoft), Brian Stottlemyer (Boonsboro Middle School, Washington County Maryland)

Fair Play: A Video Game Intervention into Bias (Mar 6, 2019 | 4:00PM – 6:00PM)

This workshop provides a unique approach to learning about the negative effects of implicit bias through perspective taking and empathy for students who experience racially-based incidents. In addition to an interactive discussion, participants will play the game “Fair Play,” which follows the path of a graduate student. The demo version of “Fair Play Today” will also be shown to elicit feedback and discussion about bias in K-12 education. Please bring a laptop (not tablet) to this session.

Speakers: Mike Beall (University of Wisconsin / Gear Learning), Donald Dantzler (University of Wisconsin Madison – LEAD Center), Jahmese Williams (UW Madison – Fair Play Project)

Esports in Education

Distraction? Education! Esports as a Learning Tool (Mar 5, 2019 | 1:00PM – 1:30PM)

Connecting kids’ passion for play with learning is the “magic sauce.” North America Scholastic Esports Federation sees value in video games beyond play alone and offers the only fully credentialed, state-approved curriculum that intertwines esports and education. The panel will share firsthand experiences and research to demonstrate how students found a new passion for learning, and how the esports ecosystem can be leveraged in clubs or classes to teach foundational STEM, ELA and SEL skills.

Speakers: Katie Salen (University of California at Irvine), Gerald Solomon (Samueli Foundation), Tom Turner (Orange County Department of Education)

Make It Theirs: Designing High School Esport Clubs (Mar 5, 2019 | 4:00PM – 6:00PM)

Esports, or competitive gaming, is considered by many to be the next big thing, with a global viewership of 292 million people in 2016 and revenues of over $463 million. But esports can do more than entertain; it can also be leveraged as a platform for youth engagement and mentorship around STEM interests and social emotional learning. This workshop will provide an overview of a free-club system that includes state approved curriculum, learning toolkits, and hands-on guidance to show how.

Esports & the Scholar Gamer (Mar 7, 2019 | 11:30AM – 11:50AM)

Esports is exploding across the world, and schools need to fully embrace esports to realize the benefits beyond the games. By understanding the concept of the “Scholar Gamer,” esports can revolutionize schools in five unique ways. The games are simply the medium to a much greater educational experience for your students. In this session, learn more about the “Scholar Gamer” and the five unique ways esports can revolutionize your school’s approach to engaging your students in their learning.

Speaker: James O’Hagan (The Academy of Esports)

XR for Learning

Creating Your Own VR Remix Party (Mar 4, 2019 | 1:30PM – 3:30PM)

This hands on workshop will provide a curriculum framework for educators and community organizations to create VR/immersive storytelling events where participants explore the histories of their own neighborhoods. Via case studies of the projects we’ve completed with local high school and college students, we’ll share the open source tools, specs, and steps for remixing VR using only a web browser. We’ll also explore the powerful community of practice that was developed through this process.

Speakers: Robert Friedman (Permanent), Humberto Perez (E4 Youth / MariaBloom Music), Carl Settles (E4 Youth)

Virtually Real: Using Immersive Tech in Education (Mar 4, 2019 | 5:00PM – 6:00PM)

What if students could join Ms. Frizzle in immersive educational experiences like those featured in The Magic School Bus? Research has shown that such environments can improve learning outcomes, confidence, and behavioral change. However, as the consumer market is flooded with affordable VR technologies, there is a need to explore benefits and pitfalls. Is VR a cost-effective approach for learning, and is it a truly democratized medium accessible to individuals across socio-economic strata?

Speakers: Sally Creel (Cobb County School District), Neha Kumar (Georgia Institute of Technology), Tamara Pearson (CEISMC at Georgia Tech), Aditya Vishwanath (inspirit)

Show Me the Money: How to Fund VR Projects (Mar 5, 2019 | 2:00PM – 2:20PM)

With hardware adoption lagging behind expectations, developing VR content is a risky endeavor with uncertain ROI. In his presentation, Filament Games CEO Dan White will offer insider tips on navigating VR as a business while mitigating that risk, drawing on experiences seeking and securing funding for two educational VR titles — Breaking Boundaries in Science, developed in partnership with Oculus, and Robo Co., supported via National Science Foundation grant funding.

Speaker: Dan White (Filament Games)

Defying Distance: Student Collaboration in VR (Mar 5, 2019 | 3:30PM – 4:30PM)

The Seattle Public Schools, in partnership with a VR industry leader, will share their experiences with taking VR beyond consumption and into collaboration, creation, and curriculum design. Our panel will discuss in-classroom experiences, cross-school collaborations where students teach and learn together in VR across zip codes, and their journey to develop Washington State’s first CTE course in VR creation. Join us to discuss strategies and challenges for bringing VR to your school.

Speakers: TuesD Chambers (Ballard High School, Seattle Public School District), Quinn Longhurst (Seattle Public Schools), Avery Wagar (BVR Club)

The Augmented Learner: Automating Human Inquiry (Mar 6, 2019 | 1:00PM – 1:20PM)

Immersive technologies are not new to learning and teaching, but the move to ubiquity of AR/AI/VR and other related tools are being touted as the way forward, quickly being deployed to classrooms and other learning environments. This talk will concisely lay out some of those promises and give some rational, fair-minded, and cautionary counterpoints to commercial dogma in this space, giving some hints and tools to help developers and educators as the technology seeps into our learning cultures.

Speaker: Eric Hawkinson (Kyoto University of Foreign Studies)

The Potential Impact of Wearables: AR & VR (Mar 6, 2019 | 2:00PM – 2:20PM)

Imagine a student staring blankly at a page of homework, unsure of where or how to start. What if a piece of wearable technology could sense their stress and give them access to the support they need with just one click of a button? This session will explore how wearables, augmented reality and virtual reality have the potential to impact learning in significant ways by presenting a series of futuristic vignettes, along with insights to help assess their potential value.

Speaker: Jason Swanson (KnowledgeWorks)

AR: Driving Equity & Opportunity in Education (Mar 6, 2019 | 4:00PM – 4:30PM)

We will explore the potential of augmented reality (AR) as a tool to overcome some of the biggest barriers in education and as a means to provide equitable access to arts, culture, and the humanities. While it may never be possible to ensure that every student in American has a chance to visit the Museum of Modern Art or the Smithsonian museums, it is possible for students to engage in these enriching experiences through vivid, three-dimensional, visual and audio experiences.

Speakers: Dave Adams (Edmentum), Elizabeth Reede (Boulevard Arts)

VR is Visceral: Ready Learner One-to-World (Mar 7, 2019 | 11:00AM – 12:00PM)

VR has reached a watershed moment, shifting from a futuristic dream to a place to have real experiences in a virtual setting. We’re now crafting learning experiences that do more than simply mirror expectations. Learning is never lazy. How are we taking VR learning to a level of presence that generates new understandings based on an experience impossible to replicate IRL? How can VR ed-design invite new approaches to identity, empathy, and social interactions, driving future-forward learning?

Speakers: Steve Dembo (Teach42), Caitlin Krause (MindWise)

Making Virtual Reality for Tomorrow’s Classrooms (Mar 7, 2019 | 11:00AM – 1:00PM)

How can we as educators use VR to foster interdisciplinary learning and new media literacies? As creators how can we ensure our content is relevant to a wide range of educational disciplines? This workshop is targeted to both content creators and educators. We will cover the production of VR projects across journalism, dance, theatre and ecology and offer practical advice on setting up a basic studio, scripting, sound design, and using VR as a teaching and research method.

Speakers: Kim Grinfeder (University of Miami), Elizabeth Miller (Concordia University), Juan Carlos Zaldivar (Phonograph Films)

Playing with Fire: Ethics & Literacy in VR & AR (Mar 7, 2019 | 2:00PM – 2:20PM)

VR and AR will transform learning and raise profound challenges for educators. We will face difficult questions of heightened emotional sensitivity, privacy, and accessibility. What new media skills will students need to critically analyze virtual environments? As we create empathic experiences, how do we ensure that our immersive environments are ethical, inclusive, and accessible? What new skills will faculty, designers, librarians and educational leaders need to address these issues?

Speaker: Emory Craig (College of New Rochelle)

Stepping Into The Story: Design Principles for XR (Mar 7, 2019 | 2:30PM – 2:50PM)

Humans are wired for stories, which are powerful ways to connect, share and learn. This talk focuses on understanding three distinct ways to step into immersive stories and create compelling learning experiences. Discover what makes AR, VR, and MR (referred to as XR) unique and review the design process and practices from high-profile virtual experiences to create immersive worlds with presence and agency that empower learning and engage students in exploring diversity and ethics in a new medium.

Speaker: Maya Georgieva (The New School)

Which SXSW EDU 2019 sessions or opportunities are you most looking forward to? Sound off on our Facebook or Twitter – maybe we’ll even see you there!

Let's stay connected!

Let's Stay Connected!
Drop your email below to receive occasional and totally un-obnoxious updates from our studio!
Interests:
Let's Stay Connected!
Drop your email below to receive occasional and totally un-obnoxious updates from our studio!
Interests: