Irish Symposium on Game Based Learning 2015 – June 4th & 5th

iGBL20152011 saw the inaugural iGBL conference led by Dr. Patrick Felicia in Waterford Institute of Technology. Five years on and the Symposium is going from strength to strength with a two day event based at the Institute of Art, Design & Technology (IADT) in Dun Laoghaire on Thursday 4th June & Friday 5th June 2015. This year’s theme is “Boosting GBL through Creativity” with a focus on the “creative influences that enrich the gamers’ experience”; that crucial mix of gaming elements from UI to narrative and characterisation that makes for a more fulfilling, engaging and effective GBL environment. It’s the combination of these creative elements that can supercharge the whole learning experience.

As always the iGBL committee, once again under the direction of Dr. Felicia, aims to make this annual event as inclusive as possible bringing together educators from all levels, along with academic researchers, game makers and industry professionals. In fact this is the “go to” event for all those who have a genuine interest in using games as a tool for learning and student engagement and are interested in exploring evidence based approaches to GBL. This year promises to have an eclectic and exciting mix of keynotes, presentations and workshops. For the first time there will be industry sponsored prizes for the best student presentation/demo.

The full programme has yet to be announced but the following keynote speakers give a small taster of what’s in store for attendees:

Dr Mikael Jakobsson, Research Coordinator of MIT Game Lab and Research Scientist at Comparative Media Studies, MIT. His research and teaching focus is game design and game culture.
Keynote: “Here Be Dragons – Exploring Uncharted Interaction Modes and Game Mechanics”

Dr Gary O’ Reilly, Senior Lecturer/ Director of the Doctoral Training Programme in Clinical Psychology at UCD and part-time Principal Clinical Psychologist at Temple Street Children’s Hospital. He has developed “Pesky gNATs”, a computer game and app delivering Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) interventions for young people.
Keynote: “Pesky gNATs! Designing Highest Quality Computer Game Based Mental Health Interventions for Young People with Anxiety or Low Mood.”

Finally, Stephen Howell, Academic Engagement Manager for Microsoft Ireland and coding evangelist. Many teachers will be very familiar with Stephen. His passion for all things STEM and coding related makes for highly enjoyable, engaging and insightful presentations.
Keynote: “Teaching Coding through Game Creation”.

In the meantime there is a current call for abstract submissions. Prospective presenters are asked to submit a 300-500 word abstract online by April 10th.

Dates for Abstract Submission:

  • Submissions Deadline: 10th April 2015
  • Author Notifications: 1st May 2015
  • Final Submissions: 8th May 2015

Submission Types:

  1. Presentations (20 minutes, 5 minutes questions) on current research studies, work-in-progress, or GBL case studies.
  2. Student Presentations or Gaming Demonstrations (5 minutes, 5 minute questions)
  3. Posters –  both traditional and electronic posters (PowerPoint or Prezi).
  4. Workshops (30 mins – 1 hour) Computer lab or classroom based, these involve active participation on behalf of attendees focusing on practical skills development.

For more information and to review past conferences go to the iGBL Symposium website.

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