GDC | Educators Summit

Educators Summit

Discover the most innovative and exciting ideas in game education in the Educators Summit on Monday and Tuesday, March 19-20, 2018. Learn best practices to bring back to your classrooms and experimental approaches that will advance the field for the next generation of students. Join educators from established game development programs and new game course creators for professional development and to explore challenges together. Search for all Educators Summit sessions, view sponsorship opportunities, and register for an Educators Summit pass to attend (or choose an All Access or GDC Summits pass).

2017 Highlighted Sessions

How Twitch Made Me a Better Teacher
Sean Bouchard (USC Game Innovation Lab)
Twitch, where viewers watch games being played live, is a massively popular destination for young gamers and an emerging platform for entirely new genres. More importantly, it offers educators of game design and analysis an opportunity to improve their teaching practice. Sean Bouchard teaches game design at the University of Southern California and broadcasts a weekly live show in which he plays games and discusses the design decisions behind them. In this session he will share the ways streaming has improved his interactions with students, and how other educators can similarly benefit from performative games criticism.
Video Game Design Practices in a Symultaneous Synchronous/Asynchronous Oncampus/Online Classroom
Marko Suvajdzic (University of Florida)
Real-time online learning is quickly becoming the Holy Grail of education. Get the insights and learn specific best practices to the real world problems encountered during the past 2 years in teaching video game design in an experimental research program where all classes are offered simultaneously to the three distinct groups of students: on-campus, online synchronous (real time video conference), and online asynchronous. Professor Suvajdzic reviews the multimedia classroom setup for this specific hybrid model content delivery method, offers best practices in teaching, reviews hardware/software options, and presents the data collected from the first two generations of the students.

Educators Summit Advisors

Katherine Isbister
UC Santa Cruz
Katherine Isbister is a leading researcher in games and human computer interaction. She is Professor of Computational Media at the University of California Santa Cruz, and core faculty in the Center for Games and Playable Media. Her research focuses on designing games that heighten social and emotional connections for players, toward innovating design theory and practice. Her lab's games have been featured in venues including IndieCade (Yamove! Finalist in 2012) and the World Science Festival. Isbister's book on game character design, Better Game Characters by Design, was nominated for a Game Developer Magazine Frontline award. Her edited volume, Game Usability, brings together best practices in game playtesting and user research. Her most recent book, How Games Move Us, explores connections between game design and players’ emotional responses.
Michael Mateas
UC Santa Cruz
Michael is recognized internationally as a leader in AI-based interactive entertainment. He was the founding chair of the Department of Computational Media at UC Santa Cruz, a department which grew out of Computer Science and combines CS, art and design to invent new forms of interactive experiences. He founded and co-directs the Expressive Intelligence Studio, one of the largest technical game research groups in the world and was also the founding director of the Center for Games and Playable Media at UC Santa Cruz. Credits include 'Prom Week', a social simulation-based interactive story and puzzle game, and 'Façade', the world's first AI-based interactive drama. Michael has given numerous keynote addresses and paper presentations at conferences worldwide. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University.
Brenda Romero
University of Limerick & Romero Games
Brenda Romero is a BAFTA award-winning game designer, artist and Fulbright scholar who entered the video game industry in 1981. As a designer, she has worked on 47 games and contributed to many seminal titles, including the Wizardry and Jagged Alliance series and titles in the Ghost Recon, Dungeons & Dragons and Def Jam franchises. Away from the machine, her analog series of six games, The Mechanic is the Message, has drawn national and international acclaim, particularly Train and Siochán Leat (often called "The Irish Game") which is presently housed in the National Museum of Play. Most recently, she received the 2017 Development Legend award at the Develop: Brighton. In 2015, she won the coveted Ambassador's Award at the Game Developers Choice Awards. In 2014, she received a Fulbright award to study Ireland's game industry, academic and government policies. In 2013, she was named one of the top 10 game developers by and Develop magazine listed her among the 25 people who changed games in 2013. Romero co-owns Romero Games based in Galway and is Program Director at the University of Limerick MSc in Game Design & Development.
Ian Schreiber
Rochester Institute of Technology
Ian Schreiber has been in the industry since the year 2000, first as a programmer and then as a game designer. He has worked on six published game titles and two serious game projects, and is a co-founder of Global Game Jam. Ian has taught game design and development courses at a variety of two-year and four-year schools, and is currently an assistant professor at RIT.

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