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GDC 2014 reveals first batch of Education Summit sessions

GDC 2014 reveals first batch of Education Summit sessions

January 23, 2014 | By GDC Staff

January 23, 2014 | By GDC Staff
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More: Console/PC, Indie, Design, GDC

Game Developers Conference 2014 organizers have revealed a few new talks as part of the Education Summit of its March conference, including sessions explaining how to teach people how to write for games, a guide to setting up and running a game user research lab, and more.

These talks are part of the GDC Education Summit, one of eight that will take place Monday, March 17 and Tuesday, March 18 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA during the first two days of GDC 2014.

As part of the Summit, Full Sail University course director Wendy Despain will draw on her years of experience in the game industry -- as both a writer and designer -- to provide a no-nonsense guide to teaching people how to write good stories for games, and how to design games to tell good stories. Despain's talk is predicated on the theory that even entry-level game writing demands expert-level knowledge of both narrative and game design, and she intends to provide attendees with a list of the essential goals for quickly and effectively teaching the craft of game writing in her talk, Top Ten Things To Teach About Game Writing.

University of Toronto senior lecturer Steve Engels is also coming to GDC 2014 to lead a session about how teachers in video game industry education programs can -- and should -- communicate with instructors at other institutions to improve their teaching plan through collaboration and friendly competition. During the talk, titled Massively Multiplayer: A Dozen Schools Teach Together, Collaboratively and Competitively, attendees will hear how Engels, along with industry peers Emma Westecott and Andrew Hogue, organized more than a dozen colleges and universities to engage their game design classes in jolly cooperation and competition on a broad scale.

Finally, DePaul University assistant professor Cynthia Putnam plans to give a talk explaining how academic game design professionals can set up and run a games user research lab at their institution. Her session, simply titled Setting Up and Running a Game User Research Class, will cover the basic design and implementation of a solid game user research class that can help students understand how to best evaluate games, then communicate those findings to a team of peers. Putnam also plans to offer some suggestions on what equipment to buy, what software to use, and the ideal way to set up a GUR lab and complementary course at an academic institution.

For more information on these or others in the show's growing lineup, check out GDC 2014's official Schedule Builder, which continues to add new talks every week. The deadline for discounted Early Bird passes, including a lower-priced Summits, Tutorials & Bootcamps Pass, is January 31. GDC 2014 itself will take place March 17-21 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

For more information on GDC 2014, visit the show's official website, or subscribe to regular updates via Facebook, Twitter, or RSS.

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