About the Course
Understanding Video Games is an 11-lesson course teaching a comprehensive overview of analytical theory pertaining to video game media.
Video games are a globally entrenched entertainment medium that entertains, informs and challenges us. These games are defined by, and define our modern culture.
In this course, students will learn how to study games and engage in informed discussions about them. Ultimately, this course is about understanding the literacy of video games.
Understanding Video Games was created with the help of world renowned video game developer, BioWare Corp, located in Edmonton, Alberta.
Play and game, emergence versus progression, game mechanics, story, interpretive theory, the culture of games, violence, sex and race in games, and finally, serious games.
Estimated workload: 3-5 hours/week for non-credit; 7-10 hours/week for credit.
Three versions of the course:
- to the world for free (no exams);
- to University of Alberta students for UAlberta credit (STS 351); and
- to students from around the world for course accreditation for a modest fee.
Course material is delivered in a student-friendly short-form fashion, with numerous formative feedback sections. Students will gain access to a number of special interactive modules designed specifically for this course. These modules will give users the opportunity to design their own video game avatar, as well as explore the short but fascinating history of video game releases.
This course's unique lesson delivery, combined with classic quiz structure, will enable students to quickly gain a solid foundational understanding of video games within the context of modern culture.
Understanding Video Games is part of an ongoing program of research into digital learning conducted by the University of Alberta, and therefore anonymized data provided by Coursera and survey information can be made accessible to the researchers.