Future Factory
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Future Factory

Increasing memory and attention for our learners

From the Ambrose reading on Memory, I think it was very insightful learning about how important it is not just for learners to understand content but to also organize it in their minds. This would then influence how they retain the memory and thus be able to apply it into future matters.

The subject of concept mapping was brought up to help learners invision the structure they are learning. And from how we were deciding to design our game, I think we were able to embody some of this in our design. As part of the gameplay, our users would be placing the World Building cards (information on this fake world in a CLA format) into consideration when they are designing a solution. This can help them visualize how to investigate and learn about a problem space. However, I think we could be more explicit in the structure of the structure during the designing phase of our future product — how should they start thinking about problem solving? How should they balance the important factors of their environment and the other stakeholders?

Our major learning goals and skills needed
Our first game plan (step by step)

The Dirksen reading on memory included very useful information and guidance on how we can create longer memory or longer attention for our learners. I think the attention activity we did in class were good real-life examples of what Dirksen was describing about chunking information, connecting it to emotion, and storytelling. I was in the team where we played the Elucidat interactive story where it provided a learning experience for what to do in life and death situations. Some key takeaways that I could connect with the readings were:

  • The site provides information in short segments and had learners reflect after each segment to help them understand the content and stay engaged because they are keeping up with the content -> Echoes the Dirksen reading where the chunking of information is important to encoding and retrieving memory
  • Allowing user to put their own input into the learning content, makes it more engaging because the user has impact over the outcome of their choices and puts more weight on their actions -> responds to how Dirksen was talking about connecting the learning experience to emotions. By having the users input and values impact the experience/story, it allows them to be more emotionally invested in what is going on.
  • Using visuals/videos to create an more effective storytelling experience -> Again, the site was using a medium that can move peoples emotions and uses pathos to persuade people quickly. Especially the intro scene, with an old lady suddenly falling to the floor. It uses dramatic music and video shots to take in a users attention to make them curious about what had happened or at least create some shock.
  • Using a story to pull in the attention of the user. The entire learning experience on Elucidat was essentially a story where they provided information bit by bit as you went through a story. The ending was especially impactful where prompted users to relate the situation to yourself and what you could do. -> This again uses the storytelling and emotional appeal that the reading had emphasized
Takeaways from the class activity and readings into our game

For our game, this was helpful in understanding what are the current areas to improve in our designs. Especially seen in the bottom of the image above, we listed down aspects from the learnings that we had and also what we don’t. From this, we will want to focus on more of the areas we lack currently: clustering more of our learning into smaller chunks and include brief reflections throughout the game, and allowing room for players to connect our learned information to other concepts and personal experiences.




A guided experience on systems thinking and designing for the future.

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Patricia Yu

Patricia Yu

Industrial/Experience Designer, Human Computer Interactions and Physical Computing at Carnegie Mellon University

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