Educators get mini-course in human centered design

The Consortium partnered with Carnegie Mellon University’s Entertainment Technology Center in November to provide a professional development opportunity for educators in our Future Ready Alliance. In addition to touring the ETC’s playful work settings–most adorned with movie posters and likenesses of movie and game characters—participants heard presentations on human centered design, design thinking and “play testing.”

Students at the ETC use design thinking as they collaborate with peers who have different specialties—from coding and graphic arts to storytelling—to create video games and other entertainment technologies. It’s used because it models the team collaboration prevalent in their industry and others.

“Play testing” enables the young developers to see how people respond to their games as they play them.

Educators participating in the professional development workshop were asked to “play test” several variations of Uno, a popular card game. Only after playing did they find out how the game had been modified for each group.

The session got rave reviews, with one art instructor calling it “the best professional development I ever had.”