Gaming

Do-it-Yourself Game-Based Content Authoring Tool Set To Launch

Muzzy Lane Software is developing a set of digital tools that will allow educators to create their own game-based content.

Course builders, online educators and subject matter experts will be able to use the new Muzzy Lane Author platform to create their own games designed to help them assess whether students can apply what they have learned. The tools will include an initial set of activity types: Smart Chat, Insights, Vote, Align and SlideShow. Other activity types are planned in the future.

"Muzzy Lane's new authoring system is a breakthrough for game-based learning in combining powerful design features with ease of use," said Harvard Graduate School of Education Professor Chris Dede. "Expanding the number of people who can build educational games will both increase students' learning and advance research on game design."

Muzzy Lane is a software developer that focuses on game-based learning, having created products in the past in conjunction with McGraw-Hill Education, Cengage Learning, and National Geographic. Earlier this year, it received a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to examine the ways game-based learning could be used to help nontraditional learners.

Muzzy Lane CTO Dave McCool said that background has given it the expertise it needed to move game-making tools into the hands of more people.

"We've re-engineered our game service to deliver a do-it-yourself solution that gives our partners greater control over their content at a significantly lower cost," McCool said.

The best part, said Columbus State Community College Assistant Professor Melissa Logue said, is that "you don't need more than simple word processing skills to create amazing learning opportunities."

Company representatives will be visiting schools around the country in the coming months to demonstrate the game service and authoring platform. It will be released in beta form to selected potential partners. Any organization interested in participating can contact author@muzzylane.com or 978-394-0319.

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.

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