Eric Klopfer, PhD 

In the MIT Education Arcade, we have spent over a decade designing learning games that have deep connections with players’ lives—artifacts that could be a part of their lives in school and at home, that could rouse their curiosity and determination, that might even seep into their dreams and imaginations. Our games are designed to resonate with your life, with your passions, and with all the systems in which they are embedded. Based on our experience designing, implementing, and researching these games, we have created a set of principles for designing “Resonant Games,” based on principles of “Resonant Design.”   Instantiating resonant design means relying on the design affordances of technologies to create those experiences, including new technologies like Mixed Realities. Mixed realities that combine digital and real experiences are now becoming a true reality. These experiences are being delivered over smartphones as well as increasingly accessible and practical head mounted displays. This ubiquity of devices is in turn making mixed reality the next digital frontier in entertainment, education and the workplace. But what do we know about where these technologies have value? Where do they add to the learning experience? And what theories and evidence can we generate and build upon to provide a foundation for using these technologies productively for learning? We have been working on mixed realities in education for over a decade and have started to learn about where, when and for whom they can add value. This talk will provide a history and overview of these experiences, including iterations of design research experiments.

Speaker Bio

Eric Klopfer is Professor and Director of the Scheller Teacher Education Program and The Education Arcade at MIT. He is also a co-faculty director for MIT’s J-WEL World Education Lab. His work uses a Design Based Research methodology to span the educational technology ecosystem, from design and development of new technologies to professional development and implementation. Much of Klopfer’s research has focused on computer games and simulations for building understanding of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. He is the co-author of the books, “Adventures in Modeling”, “The More We Know, and the upcoming “Resonant Games”, as well as author of “Augmented Learning,” His lab has produced games used by millions of people, as well as online courses that have reached hundreds of thousands. His work has been funded by federal agencies including NIH, NSF and the Department of Education, as well as the Gates Foundation, the Hewlett Foundation, and the Tata Trusts. Klopfer is also the co-founder and past President of the non-profit Learning Games Network (www.learninggamesnetwork.org).