Category Archives: CUNY Games Network

New Website, Upcoming Talks, and More!

It’s been a while since the blog has been updated, but there is much to report. First, I am excited to say that I will be acting as the new Director of Undergraduate Research at York College starting in the Fall of 2013. I will be succeeding Dr. Rishi Nath from Mathematics and Computer Sciences, who did an outstanding job of launching the program and increasing the student participation in our annual research day to nearly 300. Undergraduate research is really taking off at York College, and those involved are looking forward to attracting attention to the college, pursuing new funding mechanisms to support this work, developing productive student-faculty relationships, and learning as much as we can from each other.

Second, Transformative Games has a new website in development that offers many features for students and faculty. has been launched and content is being added rapidly to provide students and faculty at York College with the latest in games-based learning. The site also hosts a games gallery, a mirror of this blog, opportunities for student-faculty collaborations, and a discussion board for members to debate topics and provide feedback. An external site was developed primarily to host the games themselves, which is easier than hosting the site at the official York College website or the CUNY Academic Commons. While the website currently resides at a private URL, the blog will still be hosted in the Academic Commons. There are also plans to mirror the essential components of this site on the official York College website.

Finally, there are many dates coming up that I’m going to discuss in future posts:

November 6th – I will be attending the 2012 CUNY Honors Opportunities Conference at the Macaulay Honors College. This year’s theme is “Undergraduate Research: The Opportunities and the Challenges.” I hope to report many interesting developments that will affect undergraduate research and games-based learning.

November 13th – Former student Rasha Alsaidi and I will be presenting at the York College Research Conversations lecture series. Our talk, “Transformative Games: Undergraduate Research by Design,” will describe the process of creating game-based learning systems for undergraduates. The conversation will focus on productive mentor-mentee relationships and building a framework to accommodate students with widely varying research interests.

November 29th and 30th – I will be presenting two talks at the CUNY IT Conference. The first talk will be with the CUNY Games Network, and the second will be with the York College Center for Interdisciplinary Health Practice. Both talks will discuss games-based learning and are described in detail in previous posts.

CUNY Games Network to Present at CUNY IT Conference

Members of the CUNY Games Network will be presenting during the annual IT Conference at CUNY on November 29th and 30th. The advisory board will be presenting “Gaming Across the Curriculum,” which will provide an introduction to game-based learning along with examples of games designed and tested by CUNY faculty. The presentation will include “What’s Your Game Plan?,” a game designed by faculty member Joe Bisz. The game is designed to help educators create games for any classroom. The hands-on workshop will provide an opportunity to explore the fundamentals of game-based learning for novices and experts alike.

A second talk will feature a review of a new learning management system at BMCC called College Quest. The project, led by Joe Bisz and Francesco Crocco in conjunction with Neuronic Games, is designed to incorporate game mechanics into a college-wide LMS. Students design avatars, earn points and badges, work through levels, collaborate in a social network, receive push-notifications for deadlines, and much more.

CUNY Games Network Conference

Most of you are aware of the Transformative Games blog via the CUNY Games Network, so I will forgo a detailed description of that group. However, I’m excited to say that we have started planning for CUNY Fest, the first CUNY-wide games conference for learning. We are in the rudimentary planning stages, but the date is tentatively set for April 2013. We are looking to garner space in the CUNY Graduate Center, and we are seeking internal funding or support to provide for conference space, food, and stipends for keynote speakers. While the conference is designed to discuss issues related to game-based learning, there are plans to have a poster session and game demonstration that is open to faculty and students alike. I’m particularly excited about the possibility of getting students involved in game-based learning by designing and presenting their own research projects. A formal call for proposals will be issued if this plan comes to fruition.