Research Process 2016-17

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Below are the step by step instructions on how to conduct your class and implement the research. This plan assumes that you are teaching Scalable Game Design modules from the various Teaching Options.


Introduction to the Research Process

All teachers who are participating in research during the 2016-17 school year should read this page in full, as we have new resources and procedural changes to share with you. After you've been through your first implementation this year, feel free to jump to the Research Process Summary below for quick access to forms and other resources.

Basic steps of classroom implementation and data collection

There are four stages in the research process, which are described in greater detail below. Be sure to complete all highlighted items to be eligible for a stipend (USA teachers only).

1) Get started: Confirm your intent to implement Scalable Game Design

We ask you to
  • Fill out the teacher agreement, research consent, W-9, and teacher media release forms. After doing so, you and your school will be eligible to receive free access to the research software.

2) Get ready: Count down to your first day of classroom implementation

During the month preceding implementation, you will prepare to teach Scalable Game Design by
  • Checking that the AgentCubes Online software is accessible and creating student accounts.
  • Completing a Teacher Classroom Implementation Survey.
  • Reviewing the guided discovery curricular materials.
  • Providing our permission and media release forms to parents or guardians.
A signed permission form allows students to participate in the research activities.
All students, with or without this form, may participate in the classroom activities.
  • Asking all of your students to complete an online pre-survey.

3) Get going: Conduct classroom implementation activities

In the classroom, you will help students with their SGD projects. As the class proceeds, you should
  • Copy our Teacher Research Summary Tracker.
  • Collect links to student projects in the spreadsheet.
As your class approaches the end of SGD instruction, you will
  • Ask students who are research participants to complete an online post-survey.
  • Provide a computational thinking video quiz to your students.

4) Get finished: Submit post-implementation information

After each implementation you will
  • Send us the permission and media release forms you collected.
  • Share your Teacher Research Summary Tracker with us.

Get Started: Confirm Your Intent to Implement Scalable Game Design

  • Complete and email the following forms to Yasko Endo, program manager:
Step-by-Step instructions on registering as an individual.
Once the above forms are sent in, you will receive the free research software registration key for yourself and your school computers (USA teachers only). The key is valid through the end of the school year, and is a benefit extended to your school for the duration of your participation in research.

Get Ready: Count Down to Your First Day of Classroom Implementation

Three weeks (or more) before classroom implementation

  • Inform Nadia Repenning how many new student accounts you expect to need within AgentCubes Online.
As needed, she will provide teacher-level account access for you and arrange for the correct group size to accommodate these accounts.
  • Be sure to include your name, AgentCubes Online username, school, and school location in your request. There is no need to include any information regarding specific students (in a later step you will create the student accounts yourself).

Two weeks before classroom implementation

  • For students who already have existing accounts inside your group, there is no need to create additional accounts.
  • For students who already have existing accounts outside your group, consider the following:
  • At the moment, each email address can be associated with only one AgentCubes Online account. What additional email address could you use for the new account? It is possible to use a fake address, but a real address is needed for password resets.
  • The AgentCubes Online View Group Projects feature will bring up only the projects associated with group members. If students are not in your group, your Teacher Research Summary spreadsheet (described later) will provide easy access to student projects.
  • Obtain Parent Permission and Media Release Forms.
All students who participate in the research study must have a signed parent permission form on file. As you know, it can take a long time to get forms back. Signed forms will either be collected during a site visit or returned via postage-paid envelopes that will be sent to you by Yasko. Parents or guardians can insert digital signatures if desired and able.
  • PRINT OUT, HAND OUT, COLLECT PARENT PERMISSION FORMS:
Parent Permission Form (English)
Parent Permission Form (Spanish)
All students may participate in Scalable Game Design classroom activities, but only students with a signed permission form are eligible to participate in research activities.
  • PRINT OUT, HAND OUT, COLLECT MEDIA RELEASE FORMS:
Media Release Form (English)
Media Release Form (Spanish)
We like to take pictures and video footage in classrooms where Scalable Game Design activities are happening, but can only take pictures or video of students with signed media release forms. Please note that it is not necessary to sign this form to participate in the research. Digital signatures from the parents are acceptable.
  • Check the SGD Pre-Survey link to make sure it is accessible from the school computers.
  • If your name / school / class does not appear or you have a problem accessing the survey, contact David Webb for assistance. Also, a Math-specific survey is available if you are a math instructor — please ask him for the link.
  • If you have questions about using a guided discovery approach, or the materials themselves, contact Susan Miller or Jeff Bush for assistance.

One week before classroom implementation

  • Remind students to return their signed forms. At a minimum, page 2 of the Parent Permission Form (English, Spanish) is needed for research participation.
  • Once again, check that the AgentCubes Online software can be accessed from the school computers.


First day of classroom implementation

Your students will have to fill out a questionnaire before they start the game design unit. Administer the questionnaire right before or as the first activity of the Scalable Game Design module. The questionnaire takes no more than 15 minutes.
  • ALL students should take the Pre-Survey. Once we have received the permission forms from your class, we will delete survey data from the students who were not given permission to participate in research.
  • New teachers: If your school / teacher name does not appear on the list, students should select the option for "school not listed" and "teacher not listed" and type in their school and teacher name.
  • If you encounter difficulties with the Pre-Survey, contact David Webb for assistance.

Get Going: Conduct Classroom Implementation Activities

General tips


As the class proceeds

  • Collect student projects.
  • You will need to create a personal copy of our Teacher Research Summary Tracker.
  • Share your personal copy of the spreadsheet with the google account aco.arcade@gmail.com
  • Have the students add the URL of each project to your personal spreadsheet in the Student URLs tab.
  • Need help?
Step-by-step instructions in PDF format
Step-by-step help in video format.
  • Check the Post-Survey link to make sure it is accessible from the school computers.
  • If your name / school / class does not appear or you have a problem accessing the survey, contact David Webb for assistance. Also, a Math-specific survey is available if you are a math instructor — please ask him for the link.

The last few days of classroom implementation

This is a fun video survey that students take to measure Computational Thinking concepts they have learned during class. Have students take this assessment AFTER you have taught them how to design games and created at least one student game.
  • New teachers: If your school / teacher name does not appear on the list, students should select the option for "school not listed" and "teacher not listed" and type in their school and teacher name.
Your students will have to fill out a second questionnaire after they engage in game design to assess potential changes.
  • Please note that only students with parental permission should complete the POST-Survey. If in doubt, allow all students to take the survey. Once we have received the permission forms from your class, we will delete survey data from the students who were not given permission to participate in research.
  • New teachers: If your school / teacher name does not appear on the list, students should select the option for "school not listed" and "teacher not listed" and type in their school and teacher name.
  • If you encounter difficulties with the Post-Survey, contact David Webb for assistance.
  • Ensure that all student project links have been added to your personal copy of the Teacher Research Summary Tracker.

Get Finished: Submit Post-Implementation Information

  • Send the signed pages of the Parent Permission Forms to Yasko Endo.
The return mailing is part of the research protocol and responsibility. If your students have completed the Pre-Survey, Post-Survey, and Computational Thinking Video Quiz, a stipend will be issued upon receipt of the Parent Permission Forms.
  • Small classes: You may scan / email the signed pages to yasko.endo@colorado.edu or fax them to 303-492-2844.
  • Large classes: Please use the following mailing address:
Yasko Endo
University of Colorado at Boulder
Department of Computer Science
430 UCB / ECOT 749
Boulder CO, 80309
  • Send testimonials, photos, stories, and feedback to Yasko.
  • A few teachers will be asked to participate in classroom observations. Observers will collect student Media Release Forms during the visit.

Research Process Summary

Confirm your intent to implement Scalable Game Design

Three weeks (or more) before classroom implementation

Two weeks before classroom implementation

One week before classroom implementation

First day of classroom implementation

As the class proceeds

  • Make your own copy of our Teacher Research Summary Tracker.
  • Share your copy of the spreadsheet with the SGD google account aco.arcade@gmail.com.
  • Collect links to student projects in your spreadsheet.
Step-by-step instructions in PDF format

The last few days of classroom implementation

Submit post-implementation information

  • Send, email, or fax Parent Permission Forms to Yasko Endo (fax 303-492-2844, mailing address above).

Whom to contact for assistance

  • Yasko Endo for research process questions, to submit forms, for student showcase questions.
  • Susan Miller or Jeff Bush about guided discovery instruction or materials.
  • David Webb regarding the student pre-survey and post-survey.
  • Nadia Repenning regarding access to full version of AgentCubes Online, student account questions.
  • Hilarie Nickerson for other technical assistance.