Monday, March 4, 2013

GAME FOR SCIENCE: A unique virtual world of scientific discovery

GAME FOR SCIENCE: A unique virtual world of scientific discovery

Since February 2009, a number of museums have taken part in a unique collaborative effort: GAME FOR SCIENCE ( This platform, a virtual world dedicated to scientific discovery, was developed by CREO Studios ( with funding from the Canada Media Fund and 25 Canadian and international partners.

One of the keys to engagement in a virtual world is personalization. As they gain experience, students earn talent$, which they use to personalize their avatars with clothing and accessories. At users’ request, designers are pushing this personalization even further by offering players a personal space that serves as a science museum. Budding museum workers can now acquire artefacts, photographs, videos and sound files to create thematic exhibits they can invite their friends to.

In the virtual world, young people 8 to 16 years old choose an avatar and go exploring with their friends. They can go on quests, play entertaining games, and earn neurons and virtual money. A number of museums have used Game for Science to highlight games and videos produced as part of their project supported by the Virtual Museum of Canada (VMC), helping to increase the visibility and traffic of these productions. The platform, which receives 35,000 visitors a month, is attracting increasing numbers of Canadian, French, and U.S. teachers thanks to its free teaching resources suitable for elementary, high school, or collegial levels. A number of museums also take part in the GAME FOR SCIENCE Neuron Hunt, an inter-school contest that takes place throughout the school year. Sponsors offer prizes such as tickets and school visits for winning participants and schools.
Ideally, we hope to offer even more artefacts in the future, including objects presented by partner museums. Imagine if players could visit your exhibitions (the real ones) to acquire exclusive (virtual) artefacts provided by your institution. Because at CREO, we also want our virtual world to encourage players to explore the riches of the real world.

This article and link courtesy of the Teachers' Centre.

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