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CITRENZ Speakers » Diane McCarthy and Rob Oliver


The Game's the thing: levelling up from novice status

Weds 8th October, 2:00pm

Quality computer engineering education is integral to the recruitment, retention, and employment of quality software engineers, as part of enabling a greater uptake of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) careers.  The introductory programming course, xxx uses Build Your Own Blocks (BYOB) and the team creation of a game, Theseus and the Minotaur, to teach introductory programming principles and skills. This paper argues that creativity is essential to innovation. Digital Games are being increasingly used in education internationally, as well as specifically in computer education. Aotearoa-New Zealand is well positioned to leverage this gamification trend in computer education and develop games as part of teaching and learning software engineering with “expert gaming level” students. Computer game development courses can be developed collaboratively in a multi-disciplinary team, using appropriate learning theory, across ITPs in second and third year degree courses, in conjunction with regional game companies, alongside core business applications. 


About Diane McCarthy

Diane McCarthy is a senior lecturer in Professional Practice in the Department of Computing at Christchurch Polytechnic, Institute of Technology (CPIT) with extensive experience in education and advocacy for women in IT.  Diane's approach fosters self managing teams who learn collaboratively through their project experience, which have included developing games for the common good. A novice software engineer, Diane shares the dream of becoming a serious game developer with many of her students.


About Rob Oliver

Rob Oliver is a senior lecturer in software engineering at CPIT with extensive experience in the IT industry. Rob has a particular interest in teaching novices software engineering, by creating simple games in self managing teams as tinkerers and adapters, using top down approaches. Rob is keen to collaborate with other ITPs and industry to foster game development as another strand of software engineering, alongside business applications.