4th IEEE International Conference on Games and Virtual Worlds for Serious Applications (VS-Games’12)
The fourth IEEE International Conference in Games and Virtual Worlds for Serious Applications (2012) aims to meet the significant challenges of the cross-disciplinary community that work around these serious application areas by bringing the community together to share case studies of practice, to present new frameworks, methodologies and theories and to begin the process of developing shared cross-disciplinary outputs. In order to achieve this main aim the conference will pioneer new methods for bringing together and supporting communities of practice emerging in themed areas beyond the duration of the conference. Using the conference as an ignition to support a wider aspiration to form and sustain a community of practice around the field.
The term 'Serious Games' covers a broad range of applications from flash-based animations to totally immersive and code driven 3D environments where users interface with large volumes of data through sophisticated and interactive digital interfaces. This shift towards immersive world applications being used to support education, health and training activities marks the beginning of new challenges that offer real scope for collaborative and multi-disciplinary research solutions, and real opportunities for innovative development.
We invite researchers, developers, practitioners and decision-makers working with or applying serious games in their communities to present papers in the following two main streams of the conference: games and virtual world applications for serious applications. The conference will explore games and virtual worlds particularly but not exclusively in relation to:
The conference aims to ask and search for answers to the following questions:
- In what ways are games and virtual world applications effective tools?
- What founding theories and approaches are emerging to support the field?
- What and how can different technologies contribute to build ever better serious games?
- What are the benefits of serious games for end-users and stakeholders? How can benefits be assessed?
- What are the technologies (e.g. applications, platforms, engines) that are most effective in which areas and for what targets?
- What cross-disciplinary approaches are emerging to support design, development and implementation of the technologies?
- How and for what benefits is user generated content supported?
A Personal Learning Environment (PLE) is a software application (desktop or web-based) which allows students to organise learning resources and publish individual outcomes. Although PLEs are built for bottom-up personal use, they involve communication and increasingly social tools, promoting networked learning scenarios. Knowledge management, syndicating resources, trustworthiness and assessment on the assemblage of resources are actual research issues related to the improvement of PLEs.
Without a pedagogical value-add, PLEs cannot be viewed as educational tools, but perhaps advanced, user-friendly file management tools. Therefore, how can such a user-centric tool influence the study process so that meaningful and constructive activities are committed more often than rudimentary informal learning? In other words, how can self-regulation be scaffolded by a PLE? Based on research that points out the role of scaffolding in activating higher order learning competencies it is theorised in this paper that these competencies can be performed even by young users.
iClass is an integrated project which is partially funded by the 6th Framework Programme for Research and Technology Development of the European Commission. Although it started off to develop a user-centric intelligent tutoring platform, the educational vision of the project was updated during the third year and bringing support for self-regulated personalisation on mainstream virtual learning environments became the objective.
In this paper, formative features of the visual interface of the iClass Web-based RIA will be explained as signifiers of typical regulatory structures. Semiotic principles underlying each signification will be described and the role of visualisation in operant conditioning and empowerment will be discussed.