Over a three-day period, GameTech provided attendees with visions of the future in using game technology to advance the state of the art in instruction. Presentations we attended included “Enhanced Dynamic GeoSocial Environment (EDGE) Hands on Tutorial” by Mr. Matt Kaufman, ARL STTC, “Crash Course on Human-Systems Integration” by Dr. Sae Schatz, and “Designing Compelling Transmedia Learning for Military Training & Education” by Dr. Elaine Raybourn. These presentations provided great insights currently being used in the construction and application of cutting edge technologies that can help focus industry on customers needs.
One of the most interesting presentations made at GameTech 2013 was “Top 10 Games Research Findings of 2012”, by Dr. Alicia Sanchez, DAU and Dr. Clint Bowers, UCF RETRO Lab. During this presentation, Dr. Sanchez and Dr. Bowers briefly reviewed 10 empirical studies, covering research focus, results, and methodologies used by several institutions to promote the use of serious games as learning applications. From the findings of the presentations covered, it is obvious that we are just scratching the surface regarding the impact that serious games can provide learning audiences when applied appropriately.
Between presentations, we visited the exhibit area, where we attended presentations by Bohemia Interactive Studios, Discovery Machine Interactive, and Calytrix Technologies. We were impressed with the work by each of these vendors, and applaud them on their efforts. It was obvious to us that industry is focusing on creating learning solutions, and has maximized their efforts in reducing the amount of “game-ism” in their applications in order to focus more on learning science and application by the customer. There is no doubt that customers that invest in game based learning solutions have the ability to drastically increase the performance of their training audience and significantly reduce the cost associated with providing robust training options.