Before we begin…
With the Game Design with Kodu course beginning on this Monday, March 1st I thought it was time to outline how we intend this course to work….
The course will be facilitated by myself and Martin Jorgensen. It will run for five weeks and the outline of the curriculum is on the overview page. Each week will consist of delivered content through text, readings, videos and required tasks posted on Monday morning each week but the delivered content is only part of the picture and we expect all participants will contribute knowledge and ideas. The course design has been highly influenced by the work of Stephen Downes and George Siemens and the desire “that the knowledge in this course emerges as a result of the connections among the [participants] … and is not some ‘content’ shoveled from experts to recipients”
Open to everyone
This course is free and open to anyone. We hope that young people will be involved in the course and therefore we request that appropriate language is used at all times. Thanks!
Interaction is required
The course is designed to enable the course participants to share their learning and discoveries and build upon the learning and ideas of others. To achieve this users are expected to interact by posting reflections, responding to others, sharing content including games designed and developed. Although we will try to present a wide variety of information, ideas and material we know that there is other material in other places that will benefit the course and we hope that this will be unearthed during the course. We hope that participants will share content from other sources and introduce ideas from outside of the course.
We also hope that participants will tailor this course to their own needs and their own situation, that participants will feel free to pursue their unique interests, including modifying and creating their own tasks. When and if this happens we expect that this will greatly increase the knowledge about game design and development using Kodu Game Lab. We don’t expect that everyone will be doing the same thing at the same time, rather we expect that course participants will orgainise and control their own learning while still sharing what they are learning.
But feel free to not use this site
Everything you will need to participate in this course, besides a computer capable of running Kodu (sorry, you need to provide this yourself) is provided on this site. All participants have a space to post ideas, reflections and other material, to share links, updates and games but we understand you may have your own blog which you prefer to use. If you do have your own online space then that is great, but please let us know (via the settings page) the url of your blog so that we can aggregate the content that is produced outside of the course site and share it with other participants. You can also do this with your twitter and delicious accounts although your accounts must be public for us to aggregate.
The other method of communication will be the newsletter, which will be sent out periodically containing course updates.
The settings link in the right menu can be used to set your blog url, twitter account, delicious account and email address for the newsletter. If there is a website you use that is not listed and would like content aggregated please let us know and we will endeavour to make it available.
We know everything you create outside of course won’t be about Game Design and Kodu Game Lab, so we suggest specifying a tag or category and using it to identify the content of the course. #koducourse may be a good tag to use! Of course, if you plan to post on this course site then you don’t need to worry about this.
Why are we running this course?
Firstly, we are passionate about programming and game development and believe that Kodu Game Lab offers a powerful but highly accessible way to make interesting and enjoyable games. We’d love to see more games created and shared using Kodu Game Lab and we hope that this course will result in greater use and higher quality games. Secondly, we’re very interested in how online learning takes place and we are interested in understanding how a connectivist approach can be used for scalable online self directed/networked learning. This is our first course using this format but we plan others in the coming months.
A final note: The software that we’re are developing to manage this course will be made available under a GPL license when it is stable.