ECGBL 2008: how can games help us to learn?

Guest author: Jordi Sánchez Navarro
Lecturer at Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC)


Jordi Sánchez-Navarro is a lecturer at the Information and Communication Sciences Department at the Open University of Catalonia, where he teaches on screen studies, and is Academic Director of Postgraduate Studies. He achieved a PhD in Film Studies (Universitat Ramon Llull) with a dissertation about the concepts of authorship, crisis of the genres and cultural recycling in post-modern media.

He is currently researching into how video games work as educational tools, and in the formal aspects of video games, approaching both issues to the more general field of screen studies. Among other activities, he collaborates with the research groups SPIDER (Smarter People through Interactive Digital Entertainment Resources) and Technology and Conmmunication.


Between 16 and 17 October, the European Conference on Games-Based Learning (ECCBL 2008) reunites researchers, academics and professionals from the games and education areas to come together to listen, discuss and present their research, points of views and knowledge. This is the 2nd year of the conference and it is hosted by The Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) in Barcelona and held in the Silken Diagonal Hotel in Barcelona.

The conference addresses elements of both theory and practice of all aspects of Games-Based Learning, and offers an opportunity for academics, practitioners and consultants involved in the field to exchange ideas. The programme for the event will include an extensive range of peer-reviewed papers, including keynote presentations from leaders in the field, such as Simon Egenfeldt-Nielsen and Ben Sawyer.

Over the last ten years, the way in which education and training is delivered has changed considerably with the advent of new technologies. One such new technology that holds considerable promise for helping to engage learners is Games-Based Learning (GBL).

The Conference’s papers will cover various issues and aspects of GBL in education and training: technology and implementation issues associated with the development of GBL; use of mobile and MMOGs for learning; pedagogical issues associated with GBL; social and ethical issues in GBL; GBL best cases and practices, and other related aspects.

In addition to the main conference, the Conference has three mini tracks: Game Based Collaborative Learning; Game Based Learning for History, Heritage and Politics, and User-centered Learning Game Design.

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