Walsh, Andrew (2013) Game Based Learning for Information Literacy Instruction. In: European Conference on Information Literacy (ECIL), 22 to 25 October 2013, Istanbul, Turkey. (Unpublished)

Game based learning is receiving increased attention, including from the New Media Corporation’s Consortium's 2012 Horizon Report (Johnson, Adams &and Cummins, 2012), who detail it as one of their important trends in Higher Education, with a time to adoption of two to three years. Gamification is also creeping into many areas of life outside education, paving the way for its acceptance within libraries and education. For Health and Fitness, devices such as the Fitbit and Jawbone Up allow exercise- based metrics to be constantly measured, targets set, badges won and leaderboards competed in . Smartphones allow us to compete with friends byto “checking in” to locations with apps such as Foursquare. There are even openly available badge networks for learning and education, such as the Mozilla foundation’s Open Badges.
Game based learning is becoming easier to implement and to be accepted by our users as increasing numbers of people identify as gamers, including those who play casual games on smartphones and tablets. Games are no longer the near exclusive territory of teenage boys, with the average age of a gamer now being 37 (Warman, 2012). Though many recent developments have been made in the field of digital games and gamification, non-digital games are still just as relevant and have the potential to be more readily accepted thanks to the increase in digital gaming.
Games are ideally suited to the development of skills, often requiring players to problem- solve, plan, and critically consider strategies to win the game. These are core information literacy skills underlining their suitability for use in the development of information literacy skills we try to help our library users develop. Game based learning can be used in several aspects of information literacy instruction. These include introducing elements of play to encourage reflection on students’ learning; using digital and tabletop games to teach information literacy topics within more traditional information literacy instruction (such as the game SEEK!); and more in depth digital games that students interact with outside library teaching sessions.
This session will cover some key ideas of game based learning and gamification and describe how these ideas may be used in information literacy instruction. It will include a range of examples, including those the presenter has implemented. These include an online library gamification project, Lemontree (http://library.hud.ac.uk/lemontree); and a range of non-digital information literacy games including SEEK!, a card game for improving search skills (http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/15377/). It will draw on experiences from workshops the presenter has facilitated, where librarians design and prototype their own information literacy games.
The session attendees will learn how they may use games in information literacy instruction in their own institution and how they can create games either by themselves or in partnership with others.

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