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The Multiplayer Classroom: Designing Coursework as a Game by Lee Sheldon, Review

The Multiplayer ClassroomThe Multiplayer ClassroomThe Multiplayer Classroom

When was the last time you used a concept in a way it was never intended? If you think that you’ve never done that, think about anything you found a different use for. I can see the look of wonder on your face. More than likely it’s something that you’ve done. I read The Multiplayer Classroom in 2017, and found concepts that I could apply to my business.

A new year is just a couple of months away, and what I want from you is to think differently. Do something you’ve never done before. Offer your products and services in a way you’ve never done before. If your product or services were a fun game, how would it be different from what it is now?

I’ve read a few books on gamification and game design because I think reading should be fun. I think many professionals would read more books if they had fun while engaged in the activity. So, I went searching for concepts I could apply to gamify some of my products and services. Though I studied computer science back in the day, I’ve never worked in the field. Therefore, I was concerned about how much technology I needed to implement the new concepts I learned.

I enjoyed reading The Multiplayer Classroom, so I contacted the author, Lee Sheldon, to ask him about gamifying the reading challenge. He’s not a fan of gamification, but he likes the idea of gamifying reading. Sheldon offered an exciting and interesting way to do it. While reviewing my notes on The Multiplayer Classroom that I took in 2017, most of it pertains to how I can use the information to make my core product, More Reads: Blueprint to Change the World, a lot better.

However, I found some information that trainers, teachers, and lecturers can use. However, if you want a competitive advantage, buy a copy of the book. Let me say upfront that the book is pricey, but worth every penny. An updated edition came out a few months ago. I plan to get the updated edition since it’s supposed to have some new content.

Book Pairing

 The Multiplayer ClassroomThe Multiplayer Classroom GamestormingGamestorming

Reading a book summary is an excellent way to get the key concepts from business books. It’s also a great way to decide which books to buy to explore more deeply. Click the Readitforme link to join. Think of this subscription as your speed-reading superpower. You read the summary, therefore, you can digest and process the book faster.

What Is The Multiplayer Classroom by Lee Sheldon About?

The Multiplayer Classroom is a comprehensive guide to designing structured learning as a game. It’s written for educators and trainers. Or those who want to be. The author uses the principles from popular video games. The wonderful thing about this book is that you don’t need the experience building games or even playing them to use the book. And you don’t need a video game platform to use the concepts in the book.

To be honest, I’ve never played a video game and I understood the instructions in the book. You can create a multiplayer game for any subject. For me, the focus is making reading a fun game that engages readers. And they’ll learn key skills as well as develop intercultural awareness. Students in a multiplayer classroom receive experience points XP instead of grades and assignment points.

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Lee Sheldon uses game concepts from multiplayer fantasy games and weaves them into course design. You have to learn the language of gaming. For instance, students work in guilds (teams) and individually to get experience points (accumulated grades). They take on quests (assignments and projects), and defeat mobs (quizzes/tests). Do you see how you can translate the language of games into your world?

The author has done an exceptional job explaining course design in detail using gaming elements. You won’t feel foolish because he explains and defines gaming terminology. One of the things I also appreciated in The Multiplayer Classroom are the case studies. If you’re in professional development, whether a teacher, lecturer, or trainer, you’ll be able to adapt many of the techniques. And it’s especially good for group work. This is good because collaboration is increasingly becoming more important in the workplace.

Gamifying  Your Products and Services

If you’re a teacher or a trainer, it’s possible to gamify your product or service offering. It’s all about translating the real world into a game.

Players in the game keep on trying until they solve a problem. When you design your products and services as a game, be prepared for the unexpected. But learning through games can enhance the experience and increase engagement of participants. How could you design your product or service as a game to engage your customers? If this is something that you’re interested in doing, then the Multiplayer Classroom will be a goldmine for you.

How could you get your clients to take on the role of problem solver? When you think about it though, your clients came to you because they had an issue or a problem. Your role is to facilitate them solving the problem. You’d use the principles of games to engage them.

Relevant Information About Gamers

Gamers take risks because it’s safe to do so in an imaginary world. They learn to explore different strategies to get what they need. And they become adept at resolving and negotiating problems, while having fun. How does this sound to you? Could this help your clients?

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Gaming Terminology

In the book, the students take on gaming roles, create avatars, and join guilds to negotiate the monsters and quests.

  1. Defeating monsters (quizzes),
  2. Crafting goods (writing papers),
  3. Completing quests (assignments and projects)
  4. Guilds (teams)
  5. Experience points (accumulated grades)

The Multiplayer Classroom: Zones in a Game

  1. Ocean of Immersion: Focusing attention on a game is essential to drawing a player into the game.
  2. Empathy Acres: Put yourself in the player’s shoes if you want them to feel empathy for the characters.
  3. Feedback Farms: Players want immediate feedback when playing the game. They want to know how they’re doing.
  4. Wandering Wastes: When the player loses direction in the game.
  5. Interface Island: Interface between the game and player should be transparent.
  6. The Verbal Vale: Game designs what a player can do. Examples include run, jump, talk, build and so on.

Even if you don’t gamify your products and  services, using the elements of the zones in a game listed above can make your offering so much better.

Things You Need to Know About Turning Your Training or Lectures into Games

  • You can have solo players or a guild. In my situation, it would be a team of people learning in-demand skills together.
  • They’ll reach levels of achievement in a specific timeframe. As an example, at the end of the challenge, I recommend that people have a specific product they create based on their newfound knowledge.
  • The Game Master (You) steps in only when necessary. For me, readers have total control over what they learn and the books they read.
  • Moderate the process.
  • Players want rules and they must be clear and concise.
  • Self-policing is important.

Four Player Personalities

  1. Killers: Fight rather than talk. Primary home for those who play for competitions.
  2. Achievers: Play for extrinsic rewards. Equally, a strong competitor.
  3. Socializers: Enjoy interacting with other players.
  4. Explorers: Play to discover new things, to go where others have not gone yet. They lead the way for others through maps or hints.

If you were a play, which player personality best describes you? I’m an explorer.

The Adjacent Possible

The book mentions the adjacent possible, which is hovering on the edges of the present state of things. I see how this would make sense for fantasy games. The world is capable of extraordinary change as we’re seeing with the global pandemic. The training you offer can inspire extraordinary change in your customers and clients. My core product is MoreReads: Blueprint to Change the World. I think that reading the right books first helps you to change yourself. And then you can change the world.

Good Ideas

I thought it would be a good time to talk about ideas. Good ideas are not conjured out of thin air. They’re built out of a collection of existing parts. The composition of which expands and, occasionally, contracts over time. Technological advancement seldom breaks out of the adjacent possible. One door leads to another. There’s a way to get to new ideas and I think gamifying your products and services can aid in getting ideas. This is something worth thinking about.

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How to Build a PowerPoint Presentation like a Game

I thought it’s an interesting idea to look at how you could gamify a presentation to engage your audience. There are so many ideas in the Multiplayer Classroom that you can adapt to real world situations.

  1. Start with a PowerPoint template.
  2. Create a presentation, but every few pages, have multiple choice questions. This will increase audience engagement. With the increased use of Zoom, you can easily run a poll.
  3. To create the best presentations, don’t have too much information on the page.
  4. Make use of white space.
  5. Use visuals to tell a story of what the presentation is about.

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Final Thoughts: The Multiplayer Classroom: Designing Coursework as a Game by Lee Sheldon

You cannot go wrong investing in a copy of The Multiplayer Classroom. There are many ways you can apply the information if you’re in the professional and personal development space. Doing this will give you an edge because others will not take the time to do this.

The most accomplished people read books every day. They carve out the time in their schedule. When they face a problem, they often find the solution embedded in the pages of a book. Let me help you to solve your own problems. Click the link MoreReads: Blueprint to Change the World to buy.

 The Multiplayer ClassroomThe Multiplayer Classroom GamestormingGamestorming Enterprise GamesEnterprise Games For the WinFor the Win A Systematic Guide to Game-Based LearningA Systematic Guide to Game-Based Learning

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The post The Multiplayer Classroom: Designing Coursework as a Game by Lee Sheldon, Review appeared first on The Invisible Mentor.



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The Multiplayer Classroom: Designing Coursework as a Game by Lee Sheldon, Review

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