Presentation on Gamification & Video Game-Based Learning in the High School Classroom at the SLU 1818 Foreign Language Professional Training Day, & SLU Esports.

Assassin's Creed Discovery Tour, Assassin's Creed Odyssey, Discovery Tour, Esports, Game-Based Learning, Gamification, Intro to the Classical Humanities, Learning, Education and Games, Microsoft, Nintendo, Non-serious gaming, PlayLink, PlayStation, Sony, Switch, Video Game Localization, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning, Xbox

Today I spoke on gamification and video game-based learning at the Saint Louis University 1818 Foreign Language Professional Training Day, organized by the Department of Languages, Literatures, & Cultures.

Glad to have met such a dynamic group of dedicated high-school foreign language teachers! Their students in Italian, French, Spanish, Russian, Classics and Chinese receive SLU credits. My presentation, “Video game-based learning in the high-school classroom?” was very well received.

On a related note, today I was asked and accepted to serve on the SLU Esports Advisory Committee. Looking forward to spearheading the educational value of Esports at my institution.

Developing a VGBL-based “Intro to the Classical Humanities” course & Assassin’s Creed Odyssey’s Discovery Tour Mode.

Assassin's Creed Discovery Tour, Assassin's Creed Odyssey, Discovery Tour, Game-Based Learning, Intro to the Classical Humanities, Microsoft, Non-serious gaming, PlayStation, Sony, Uncategorized, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning, Xbox

The Discovery Tour Mode released today for Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is a fantastic addition to an already excellent game. I am very excited about its release, particularly because I am currently developing a video game-based learning / digital media learning “Intro to the Classical Humanities” course with my colleague in the Classics program, Dr. Joan Hart-Hasler.

I studied Classics for most of my life (12 years of Latin coursework, 10 years of Greek). I fell in love with the Greco-Roman civilization by the time I was 14. I was very impressed with the re-construction of Hellenistic Alexandria in Assassin’s Creed Origins, its history, monuments, everyday life and even the use of Koine Greek by non-playable characters (NPC). The lexicon and pronunciation of the ancient common language of the Greek empire has been carefully, effectively and convincingly re-constructed. Now, I cannot wait to explore their tour of Classical Greece and re-construction of the language, life and culture, and explore its pedagogical uses in our college course. “Intro to the Classical Humanities’ will be taught in English, as a large first-year experience course. Besides video game-based learning, I plan to include graphic novels and other digital media. I hope to present it to the undergraduate course committee sometime this fall, and teach it next spring.

What is most exciting about the inclusion of the Discovery Tour, in my opinion, is that it makes digital game-based learning/quest-based learning accessible to high-school and, in some cases, even middle school students. In fact, it is a “pacific” mode, devoid of violence.

Kudos Ubisoft & merci Maxime Durand & team!


https://www.polygon.com/reviews/2019/9/10/20859403/assassins-creed-odysseys-discovery-tour-review-ancient-greece-education-game?fbclid=IwAR0TzGG9swN57N23Dqac9XO8qcm7CKONiRZ8gkFhhOQXozq4x1D5bgi-ytg

Image: Koine Greek – Source: Hector Abuid on Flickr [https://www.flickr.com/photos/21536074@N00/2560077543]

S. Bregni, Video Game-Based Learning as a Preparatory Device & Simulation Strategies for Study Abroad Programs, Beyond – The ISI Florence & Umbra Institute Journal of International Education, 2, 2019.

Game-Based Learning, Non-serious gaming, PlayStation, Sony, Switch, VGBL in F/L2 Publications, Video Game Localization, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning, Xbox

Thank you ISI Florence and The Umbra Institute. My new article on video game-based learning, (Digital) Narrow Streets of Cobblestone: Game-Based Learning as a Preparatory Device & Simulation Strategies for Study Abroad Programs, appeared today on the new issue of Beyond – The ISI Florence & Umbra Institute Journal of International Education:

https://www.beyondjournal.online/post/video-game-based-learning-as-a-preparatory-device-simulation-strategies-for-study-abroad-programs

Abstract
For decades now, video games have been a pervasive part of our culture (NBCNews.com, 2013). About half of all American adults play video games (Duggan,
2015), while 97% of teen boys and 83% of teen girls also play video games
(Anderson & Jiang, 2018).
The potential for utilizing gaming in learning has been explored in a variety of
fields, including language acquisition (e.g., Reinders, 2012). Some commercially available cinematic video games are fully-interactive multimedia experiences. Thus, including such games in the curriculum as realia (Spurr, 1942; Dlaska, 2003) can help students reinforce, and expand upon, materials they learn through traditional methods. Realia reinforce second/foreign language (F/L2) acquisition through development of specific personal interests. Cinematic games, similar in nature to movies, also add agency, which improves learning (Deters et al., 2014). They also involve problem-solving and critical thinking that can be applied to group interaction, all of which is particularly conducive to learning (Wenger, 1998) and F/L2 acquisition (Nunan, 1992). Video games can
contribute to the goal of transforming our students into life-long learners of (a)
F/L2 language(s), a process explored by CALL (e.g., Smith, 1997).
This article is a case study on teaching practices with video game-based learning, its benefits in the foreign language classroom and, in a more general sense,
in second/foreign language & culture acquisition (F/L2). I argue that utilizing
video games as part of F/L2 experiences, including in the different phases of
the study abroad experience (pre-departure, during the program, and post-departure), can enhance the learning of F/L2 language and culture. Video games
are simulations that challenge, based on repetition, which involve players at a
deep level, thus affording agency. In recent cinematic “AAA” commercial video
game titles, the simulation aspect engages players in a dialogue-based, narrative context that can prepare students for real-life conversations. The article
also serves as a practicum, by providing suggestions on how to use commercial video games to enhance language & culture acquisition as part of independent, autonomous students’ learning that educators and administrators
can foster, structured learning experiences such as study abroad (including
pre- and post-departure), and courses.

Keywords: Game-based learning, CALL, CAI, gamification, foreign languages,
second language acquisition, SLA, video game-based learning, VGBL, gaming,
non-serious gaming, Italian, Italian as a Second Language, Assassin’s Creed,
Tomb Raider, Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls, Sony PlayLink.

* This research was supported in part by a fellowship and an award from the Saint Louis University Reinert Center

#VGBL , #gamebasedlearning#studyabroad#studyabroadprograms#italian#italy#esl#sla#fla#videogames, #CALL, #CAI, #Gamification, #Gaming

Interview on St. Louis Public Radio/NPR – Intensive Italian for Gamers

Game-Based Learning, Hidden Agenda, Non-serious gaming, NPR, PlayLink, PlayStation, St. Louis Public Radio, Video Game Localization, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning

Grazie/Thank you St. Louis Public Radio for your interview! The interview was broadcast today, April 17, 2019, and it is available at the following link:

https://www.kbia.org/post/slu-students-level-language-skills-video-game-based-italian-class?fbclid=IwAR3RvNwK9ZL14uKj_6ZK-3qqLupDuoCfXgSXZfRSnhhGEToF3gKrHHxRORo#stream/0

Thank you St. Louis Public Radio reporter Shahla Farzan for featuring my scholarship and teaching practices on video game-based foreign language learning at Saint Louis University!

Gamification and (Video) Game-Based Learning in the Second/Foreign Language Classroom – Roundtable Session at the AAIS 2019 Conference – Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC

AAIS 2019, Game-Based Learning, Microsoft, Nintendo, Non-serious gaming, PlayStation, Sony, Switch, Video Game Localization, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning, Xbox

On Friday, March 15, 2019, I presented in the roundtable session “Gamification and (Video) Game-Based Learning in the Second/Foreign Language Classroom” at the American Association of Italian Studies Conference at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC with fellow Italianists Prof. Camilla Zamboni, Wesleyan University and Dr. Brandon Essary, Elon University. Prof. Zamboni talked about analog “AAA” games, board games and RPG’s, while Dr. Essary and I shared our developments on using “AAA” video game titles.
The session was very well attended and we received very positive feedback.

[Photo: Dr. Bregni (center) with co-panelists Prof. Camilla Zamboni, Wesleyan University, and Dr. Brandon Essary, Elon University]

My Interview with the National Museum of Language

Game-Based Learning, Microsoft, National Museum of Language, Nintendo, Non-serious gaming, PlayStation, Sony, Switch, Video Game Localization, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning, Xbox

Grazie/Thank you National Museum of Language for your interview! The interview was published on 3/19:

http://languagemuseum.org/interview-with-simone-bregni-professor-at-saint-louis-university/

I talk about my passion for language learning, video game-based learning with “AAA” titles and my methodology (Identify, Acquire, Create), my research and teaching practices at Saint Louis University, Intensive Italian for Gamers, Assassin’s Creed and Sega’s Shenmue as the best game to learn Japanese language and culture.

 

Presentation in the Session “Can AAA Games Be Used to Improve Education?” at the SXSW EDU Conference in Austin, TX – March 6, 2019

Game-Based Learning, Nintendo, Non-serious gaming, PlayStation, Sony, Switch, Video Game Localization, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning, Xbox

On Wednesday, March 6, 2019, I presented in the session “Can AAA Games Be Used to Improve Education?” at the SXSW EDU Conference in Austin, TX. The session was organized by Maxime Durand, Ubisoft’s historian in charge of the Assassin’s Creed series.
The session was very well received, with a lively Q&A session at the end, and very positive feedback.

https://schedule.sxswedu.com/2019/events/PP85160

Session Description:

Playing videogames has become an integral part of mankind’s cultural habits. A huge gap still divides “AAA” entertainment games (such as Assassin’s Creed) from “serious’’ games (games created by educators for specific educational purposes) in terms of appeal and defined learning objectives. Using data and sharing their own in-class experience, the panelists discussed how AAA games can help advance learning (formal and informal) for students at all stages of their education, from grade school to college.

It was a pleasure to present with Maxime Durand and Brian Stottlemyer, and I look forward to collaborating with them in the future.

Thank you Maxime Durand @TriFreako and @Ubisoft for a great professional opportunity!

Sega’s Shenmue: the Best Video Game Series for Japanese Language & Culture Acquisition?

Game-Based Learning, Microsoft, Non-serious gaming, PlayStation, Sony, Video Game-Based Language Learning, Video Game-Based Learning, Video Games in Foreign Language Teaching & Learning, Xbox

My interview for the Italian video game online magazine/platform Multiplayer.it about one of my favorite video game series ever, Shenmue, and its value in terms of acquisition of Japanese language & culture, was published today:

https://multiplayer.it/articoli/shenmue-e-il-miglior-videogioco-per-comprendere-la-cultura-giapponese.html?fbclid=IwAR0ktOfQJpUn7OeQ57srn2SgH74oAIba8zbQNYXuP8RSFtf8NIQ6NDuVktM

An English translation of the article is available here:

View at Medium.com

Thank you Emiliano Ragoni of multiplayer.it for your excellent article! And Arigato! Mr. Yu Suzuki for your gaming masterpiece!

In my recently-published scholarly article  “Using Video Games to Teach Italian Language & Culture: Useful, Effective, Feasible?” NEMLA Italian Studies XXXIX special issue “The Italian Digital Classroom: Italian Culture and Literature through digital tools and social media.” [available as a PDF download  (https://www.buffalo.edu/content/dam/www/nemla/NIS/XXXIX/NeMLA%20Italian%20Studies%202017%20-%20Using%20Video%20Games.pdf and in print], I also mention the Sega Shenmue series as an excellent learning device, the best, in my view, in terms of Japanese language and culture acquisition. The game includes Japanese and English audio tracks and subtitles. Lip-syncing is in Japanese. The first episodes is set in the Japanese town of Yokosuka,

The first game in the series was released in 1999 in Japan and in 2000 in the US and Europe on the Sega Dreamcast. Episode II was released in 2001 on the Sega Dreamcast, then ported in 2002 on the original Microsoft Xbox. The first two episodes in the series have been recently re-released (August 2018), updated in high-definition, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Windows PC. A third, new original episode is scheduled for release in late August 2019.

In my interview, I also discuss my methodology (IAC: Identify, Acquire, Create); my current work with the Assassin’s Creed series and future developments with Assassin’s Creed Origins and Odyssey; and my participation at SXSW EDU in Austin in March 2019.

Image: Sega Shenmue – Sega AM2 – Creator Yu Suzuki.