Assessment, Data Use, Evaluation, Learning Design, Methodology, Technology
CRESST has been conducting work for the ENGAGE Program, focused on developing STEM skills and understanding for primary-aged learners. CRESST’s responsibilities have been to provide educational assistance in the field of force and motion (physics) for an external game developer, and to evaluate the quality of the game. In addition, CRESST developed—with its partner SimInsights—a test bed to allow us to expand provisional games, so we could understand the design, pedagogy, and assessment needed to assist other providers in the ENGAGE network. In the course of evaluating games, we have developed Go Vector Go, which teaches physics concepts and problem solving, along with Team Vector, which focuses on physics learning, as well as social and emotional learning related to children’s anti-bullying reactions.
In addition to the test bed games, the Engage project collected data—both on the ground and crowdsourced—to determine elements of the game and assessment (best used icons). We also evaluated the games using the data of thousands of students, which expanded our use of ontologies to map physics concepts and sub-concepts. We have also developed rapid approaches to improving aligned performance assessments. The overall impact of ENGAGE R&D will add to the work of the Center for Advanced Technology in Schools (CATS) and provide the gaming community a wider range of useful evaluation approaches, including play testing, validation of outcome measures, experimental analyses, feature tagging and analysis, evidence of students’ self-efficacy, and survival analyses. These approaches will assist game developers and researchers in assessing the quality of their innovations during and following developmental cycles.