The following was posted by Netia Elam on the AP biology listserv last night. AP teachers out there might want to get involved with this research. Gaming has a lot of potential for learning in the classroom.
“The Federation of American Scientists (FAS), a non-profit organization researching the design and impact of learning technologies, will be demonstrating Immune Attack later this week at the National Association of Biology Teacher’s Professional Development Conference in Atlanta. Immune Attack is an educational game that introduces basic concepts of human immunology. I used it with my AP Bio students last year, and not only did they enjoy playing the game, they also enjoyed being part of the research process!
FAS is beginning a large-scale evaluation of Immune Attack and is looking for high school and college biology teachers willing to participate. If you are willing to evaluate the game with your classes, please visit FAS at booth #313 or click on the link below to complete a short questionnaire about the classes you teach.
Click here to complete the questionnaire. [http://fasweb.beacontec.com/blog/immuneattack/?page_id=60]
FAS will contact all of the teachers who are interested in participating – please forward this email to colleagues that might also be interested in participating. Thank you very much for your help in this important learning research project.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT IMMUNE ATTACK
Overview of the Game: Immune Attack is designed to have the look and feel of a commercial quality video game and was funded in part by a National Science Foundation grant to FAS and Brown University. It is designed to be used as adjunctive material for a chapter on immunology in high school and college biology freshman textbooks such as Biology: Exploring Life by Campbell, Williamson & Heydon; Prentice Hall Biology by Miller & Levine; and Biology by Campbell & Reece. A prototype of the Immune Attack game has been tested with approximately 300 students across the country. Feedback from the prototype evaluation was subsequently used to improve the player interface and learning content.
Evaluation: The evaluation is designed to assess differences in attitudes and enthusiasm towards science in general, immunology in particular, and level of understanding of the immune system among students who play Immune Attack. Filling out the two evaluation forms shouldn’t take longer than 10 minutes and playing the game would require an additional 45 minutes. Student pre- and post- surveys and teacher questionnaires will be collected via a website. Information will also be collected on age, gender, race and experience with video games both for teachers and students to allow for more meaningful interpretation of data.
Anticipated outcomes for students who play Immune Attack versus the control groups include: 1) greater increase in student interest and enthusiasm for immunology in particular and for science in general; 2) greater increase in student interest in biotechnology related careers; and 3) improved knowledge of the immune system.
Federation of American Scientists Contact: