The ENGAGE project at Carnegie Mellon University seeks to produce highly innovative educational games for science learning plus scientific evidence of their effectiveness. These games, designed at the Human-Computer Interaction Institute and Entertainment Technology Center, are aimed at students in Pre-K through Third Grade and teach scientific concepts as well as a collaborative process of scientific inquiry.
The games developed in this project will be the basis for reproducible innovations in the creation of educational games, including how to design games to be “diagnostic” of student learning and socio-emotional development, and how to make educational games adaptive to learners’ developing knowledge state and collaborative skill. This new knowledge will be based on a strong set of iterative experimental studies of educational games, comparing it against a number of contrasting control conditions. Experimental evaluations of educational games are still too few and far between. Given the enormous interest in educational games, scientific evidence related to their effectiveness is urgently needed.