Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Immune Attack!

More and more educational games pop up each month, some more fluff than substance. Meris Stansbury at eSchool News reports on a new game from the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) that meets the high standards you want for your students. And it's free.

Immune Attack was created by immunologists, teachers and "learning scientists from institutions such as Brown University, the University of Southern California, and Escape Hatch Entertainment." Henry Kelly, president of FAS, said of the game's focus on the immune system, "We felt the subject lent itself perfectly to an attempt to use game technology to convey sophisticated knowledge while retaining interest in the phenomena." The game was tested in schools before its release.

Immune Attack uses three-dimensional simulations whose images were created by medical illustrators for scientific accuracy. The game also has features like conferencing and auto-tutoring to appeal to and help students at all levels and to promote individualized learning. It also has an assessment tool so you can see how much your students have absorbed. Immune Attack is meant to supplement rather than replace a lesson in the class and to be used in conjunction with other materials and lessons. At the FAS website, you can download the game and also find a teacher's guide with tips on using the game with your students.

Immune Attack is aimed at high school biology students to help them better understand the links between classwork and real-world illnesses and treatments. High school teachers are being recruited to evaluate the game, too. Still, it can be a valuable tool in middle school and a great way to draw your game-loving students toward STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) subjects and careers.

SOURCE: "Scientists release educational computer game " 05/22/08
photo courtesy of katmere, used under this Creative Commons license

No comments: