Reflecting Allowed

Maha Bali’s blog about education

A Different (Authentic?) Approach to Reading and Feedback


So for my educational game design class I’m trying something new this semester.

Here’s the gist:

1. No assigned readings. Students find their own readings in two ways:
A. They google for their own resources, and reflect on them on their blog (bonus points for finding a reading no one else has used or using multiple sources)
B. They get on Twitter and find readings via hashtags or they ask people who are edu game design experts for recommendations. I’m gonna incorporate elements of this into the Scavenger Hunt activity to sort of scaffold their way to using Twitter in this way

2. Authentic feedback on their game designs. When they start creating their games, I will do to things differently:
A. I will ask my friends from online and f2f to check their blogs and give them feedback on their games; and for them to give feedback to other teams on their blogs as well
B. I aim to have them finish their games before last day of class, and to display their games in some public venue (public to the univ community i mean) on the last day of classes, and I will also invite some game design experts (already came last year as guest speaker and also came to last class).

Thoughts, suggestions, volunteers to help?

My Twitter scavenger hunt (will be an evolved version of this one) will likely be this Thurs Mon May 4 at 2pm my time – that’s 8am EDT, 1pm Britain. Can you make it? I’d be asking you to just respond to my students’ tweets occasionally

Thanks in advance!


  1. The best decision I ever made was asking students to contribute readings and start the discussions. Just a quick thought about no assigned readings, though. I have found it useful to provide a few core readings AND ask students to contribute more to the mix. The core readings lay groundwork and give students hints about keywords that they can search. Sometimes having the whole of the internet as a playground is too big… they get stymied by too much from which to choose. Generally, I’ve done some reading in the content area and I have a good idea of some pieces that lay a good foundation. Good luck!

    • Thanks Catherine. Actually, the Twitter Scavenger hunt will help them find the readings i want them to read (some will be found via hashtags and people, others will be articles by particular people). But next semester when I have more time with them I should do what you suggest and give them one or two to kick start them. I also don’t know how good their digital/info literacy is, but this will help me get an idea.

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