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CyGaME Engages Broad Audience in Science Learning

NSF Award:

RUI: CyGaMEs: Cyber-Enabled Teaching and Learning through Game-based, Metaphor Enhanced Learning Objects  (Wheeling Jesuit University)

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Developed by a grant from NSF's Research and Evaluation on Education in Science and Engineering (Reese) program, CyGaMEs (Cyberlearning though Game-based, Metaphor Enhanced Learning Objects) relies on cognitive science theory to design video games that help students learn abstract science concepts. The Center for Educational Technologies® at Wheeling Jesuit University in West Virginia has produced Selene: A Lunar Construction GaME that measures changes in learning. In Selene, players learn about the solar system's basic geological processes by blasting away at a moon-like planet. So far, more than 2,000 youth worldwide have registered to play Selene.

Researchers discovered that undergraduate students were able to infer significantly more lunar science concepts after playing the game. Richard Soos, an elementary school teacher in Texas, also noticed improvement in his students' science knowledge after playing. Games created by CyGaMEs stand to engage a large population, not just students, in science learning.


  • Image of Earth
The Moon's surface, looking towards Earth
© 2010 Jupiterimages Corporation
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