OIT event highlights OHIO Esports Arena’s many academic uses

Published: September 23, 2022

Author: Staff reports

With its launch earlier this month, the OHIO Esports Arena not only became the home of OHIO’s varsity esports team, but also a leading-edge academic space that offers new ways for faculty to incorporate game-based learning into their curricula.

During the Office of Information Technology’s Learning Spaces Advisory Community on Sept. 15, online and in-person participants got an in-depth tour of the space, as well as an overview of its design to facilitate current and future multidisciplinary academic activities.

Each of the arena’s 30 computers (available to anyone with an OHIO ID) are not only optimized for gaming, but also have a variety of game titles available to play that can also be used for teaching and experiential learning activities.

“Just like you would choose the right film or book to teach a concept in your class, this space allows faculty to find the right game,” said Esports Director Dr. Jeff Kuhn. “Games are texts that our students are interacting with all the time, but we may not be leveraging this gaming literacy in our classes.” Students may access their own personal game licenses through popular platforms like Steam or Epic Games, and faculty may request that games purchased through their departments be deployed to these computers.

The arena’s broadcasting capabilities offer rich opportunities for students to learn both the camera-facing and behind-the-scenes skills involved in game streaming.

The OHIO Esports Arena
OHIO students are shown running the production room for a Bobcat Esports broadcast.

Furthermore, faculty could be featured as special guests to speak on the Bobcat Esports Twitch channel, bringing their areas of expertise into the world of gaming and esports.

Faculty interested in learning more about how to incorporate the Esports Arena into their class activities and curriculum may contact Kuhn at [email protected] In addition, the Esports Academic Advisory Board invites faculty to cultivate ideas, develop best practices, and assist faculty in developing academic use cases for the space. Faculty interested in joining the board may contact Professor Emeritus Dr. Hans Kruse at [email protected]

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