Polish and Present

On the library’s 80″ TV
Gerald Rezes, Fall 2015

Information Literacy Jeopardy – New and Improved

For my polish and present, I chose to revisit the badge game. I envisioned a more T.V. Jeopardy! styled game than the questions and answers style I created for the second game.  So I set about to improve my second game and create a Jeopardy board in Scratch. Scratch might not be the best platform for this game since Scratch is limited to a 480×360 pixel screen but, I wanted to continue to explore its capabilities.  So here it is:

Information Literacy Jeopardy – Part Deux

This game is played by two players or groups.  To promote literacy and to give each player a chance to play (instead of one player mastering the board), I purposely designed the game to swap turns between player 1 and player 2.  I also only increased the scores for correct answers and did not take away points for incorrect answers.  In the style of a physical social game, I envision that the game would be displayed using a projector or on a large touch screen monitor like the 80″ at my work library.  The players could stand/sit near the monitor and the game master, ala Alex Trebek, would control the game board.  Since the players take turns, there isn’t a reason or need for the players to buzz-in thus eliminating a particular game design challenge.

There are two ways to monitor and score this game.  The first takes the physical approach and the game master manually approves answers and keeps score.  This gives the game master leeway to accept alternatively phrased responses.  The second way to play is for the game/computer to keep track of responses and score.  This method does not allow for alternative responses.  For example if the programmed response is “What is My Library Account?” and the player responds with “What is my account?,” the game will count the answer as wrong because it isn’t exactly worded the same however, the game master might accept the response since it is close.  The computer game play option works well as an online game.

Who Is This Game For?

I have been developing my game idea with a specific institution in mind that being where I work, Loma Linda University, University Libraries.  It is an academic, health sciences library that serves the university’s schools of medicine, dentistry, allied health professions, public health, nursing, behavioral health and religion.  Each school or school department often request liaison librarians to initiate an orientation to the library’s resources. The learning goal is that the students are informed as to the resources the library available to them.   Those with an interest in the learning goals of this game would be the library administration, liaison librarian, school dean and the class instructor. The game’s goal is to increase the retention of the information literacy presented in library orientation sessions.  The students should learn about the library’s resources and be able to apply the information learned to produce stronger research papers.  This game gives the students better retention of the library instruction because, a fun gaming experience creates a learning environment that facilitates this transfer into memory.  The population that would benefit are the students.  Students from all the schools would benefit from a targeted information game that honed their library skills.  The liaison librarians teaching information instruction and the university library would be responsible for promoting the game perhaps with a Information Literacy Jeopardy tournament.

Attracting Players

AdCardThere are two ways to attract players for the game.  One is a captive audience.  The game could be played at the end of a library orientation instruction session.  The students would be already in the room and prepped for the game.  Another means of attracting players is to put on a special gaming night in the library such as a Jeopardy tournament.  In this case, advanced advertising would need to take place.  The library could go around the campus and put up 10”x10”, blue tiled cards printed with a Jeopardy category.  Some ideas are: “Things that are fun”, “Great ways to spend an afternoon” and “A new date night”.  The potential player would flip the card over and there would be details on the game’s time and location.  In addition to the flyers, there would be signage in the library, physical and digital, advertising the upcoming gaming event.  Lastly, the potential players should know what they are playing for such a receiving fabulous prizes.  Prizes could include free library print cards for printing or Starbucks gift cards.

Annotated Bibliography

Boss, K., Angell, K., & Tewell, E. (2015). The Amazing Library Race: tracking student engagement and learning comprehension in library
orientations. Journal of Information Literacy, 9(1), 4-14. doi: 10.11645/9.1.1885 Retrieved from

This article describes a “live” race in the physical library familiarize first year students with service points in the library.  The Amazing Library Race (ALR) is based on the TV game The Amazing Race.  Student engagement and problem-based learning were two concerns that factored into using this type of gamifying the library orientation experience.  The paper goes into great lengths on the assessment of the ALR and concludes that the game-based library orientation was a success meeting or exceeding all assessment criteria.  I can use the information in this article to boost gamification justification.

Fleming-May, R. A., Mays, R., & Radom, R. (2015). “I Never Had to Use the Library in High School”: A Library Instruction Program for At-Risk Students. portal: Libraries & the Academy, 15(3), 433-456.  Retrieved from

This article discusses that one-shot, one time only library orientation is not enough to help at-risk students.  A three class workshop was developed for 2012 and 2013.  The results showed improvement for the students that complete the three session class.  All these session were conducted in-person. Taking from this assessment that more is better, it might be better to have an online library orientation session that is always available to students so that they have additional opportunities for learning.  Maybe the Information Literacy Jeopardy game can have more randomized answers/questions so that repeated gameplay is possible. However, the article does make it clear that online library orientation did not alleviate library anxiety whereas in-person instruction did better.

Gall, D. (2014). Facing off: Comparing an in-person library orientation lecture with an asynchronous online library orientation. Journal of Library & Information Services In Distance Learning, 8(3).  Retrieved from

The article asks if there are differences in learning outcomes between traditional in-person library orientation and online, self-paced orientation.  The results indicate that with in-person orientation students connected with the library more but with online orientation, they were more self-sufficient.  The study goes on to recommend to continue online orientation with the possibility of incorporating in-person participation.  From this recommendation it is clear that improving online education with a personal touch, like gaming, will be a benefit.

Giles, K. (2015). No budget, no experience, no problem: Creating a library orientation game for freshman engineering majors. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 41(2), 170-177. doi: Retrieved from

A treasure hunt game where engineering students are tasked to search the library building and online to find clues and solve the mystery of a stolen book.  The information literacy objectives were to teach the students about the library and its resources; look for information in the catalog and find the resource with the call number; and gain experience with the citation management software RefWorks.  The “Mystery at the Library” game was a success in introducing freshmen engineering students to the library.  This project gives me some ideas on how to improve my games and how to incorporate library orientation into them.  It also gives evidence to support gamification in library orientation.

Kim, B. (2012). Harnessing the power of game dynamics. College & Research Libraries News, 73(8), 465-469.

This article talks about the how’s and why’s to initiate games into library orientation.  There is a section on the dos and the don’ts that I think will help me in my gamification.  I like the idea of having a progress bar either in the patron record or somewhere on the screen.  Scoring is the progress bar in my Jeopardy game.

Mangan, R. (2015). Play to learn gamifying the academic library. inCite, 36(9), 16-17.  Retrieved from

This article is light on content but gets its point across:  Library literacy through gaming is fun.  The overwhelming conclusion of students that completed the “Library Quest” game is that it gave them information in a fun format.  “In its first year, Library Quest increased student participation in library orientation activities by 212%.”  This article gives positive reinforcement to gaming for information literacy.  Also, the demo presented a fun narrative approach which is inspiration to me for further game development.

Massey, A. P., Brown, S. A., & Jeanne, D. J. (2005). It’s all fun and games … Until students learn. Journal of Information Systems Education, 16(1), 9-14.  Retrieved from

“The purpose of this teaching tip is to describe the use of games as active learning techniques to encourage students to review materials over the life of a course and engage them in review sessions.”  The study used crosswords for homework  and Jeopardy for section review.  The study tested student performance and questioned the students regarding how the games helped in overall knowledge retention and exam performance.  The study showed that exam performance and student perception of learning increased in the two classes that included these gaming methods.  Although far from being conclusive (I did not see a control group used in this study) the results are encouraging that games like Jeopardy help students understand the material.

Stiwinter, K. (2013). Using an interactive online tutorial to expand library instruction. Internet Reference Services Quarterly, 18(1), 15-41. doi: 10.1080/10875301.2013.777010 Retrieved from

A look at library instruction using Adobe Captivate and Prezi for orientation.  This model provides a more traditional instructive approach that of “instruct and quiz.”  The overall conclusion is that this online tutorial helped to expand library instruction but I think the gaming aspect is not as involved.  Nonetheless, it is a good article to compare a traditional online instruction tutorial with gamified instruction.

Tewell, E., & Angell, K. (2015). Far from a Trivial Pursuit: Assessing the effectiveness of games in information literacy instruction. Evidence Based Library & Information Practice, 10(1), 20-33.  Retrieved from

A study on whether or not gamifying information literacy instruction benefits the learner.  Learners in two groups were given library instruction with the experimental group also incorporating two online games.  The experimental group significantly improved their pre- to post- instruction scores compared to the control group.  I can use this as evidence to support a gamified library orientation plan.

Walker, B. E. (2008). This is jeopardy! An exciting approach to learning in library instruction. Reference Services Review, 36(4), 381-388. doi:10.1108/00907320810920351 Retrieved from

This paper studies the usefulness of using a Jeopardy style game in a one-shot library instruction.  The paper describes the game, how it was constructed, the rules and the game play.  The outcomes indicate that the Jeopardy style game provided motivation for the students to be active participants in learning, reinforce learning concepts taught in the orientation and it provided a fun variety to the class.

Assessment Tool

This assessment tool draws  from multiple reading sources. The library would use this scale in an attempt to address learning the key concepts of library orientation, therefore creating knowledge that is in turn relevant to students using the library for research.  For the students, the game needs to be enjoyable, social (if played in groups) and satisfy their knowledge needs.

0 – Does not demonstrate 1 – Demonstrated 2 – Highly demonstrated
Enjoyment1 Is not fun to play Is fun to play Very fun to play
Usability1 Is not playable, contains many issues Is playable with few issues Is playable and no issues
Learning1 Does not create learning Contains some learning elements Learning is a key element
Social2 Is not social Contains some social interaction Is highly social and critical to the game
Narrative2 Does not contain a narrative story Contains some elements of story narrative Is highly narrative and critical to the game
Action2 Does not contain action play Contains some elements of action Is highly action based and critical to the game
Knowledge2 Does not require real world knowledge to play Requires some knowledge to play Is critical to the game that real world knowledge is used
Strategy2 Does not require strategy to play Requires some strategy to play Strategy is a major part of the game
Attention3 Does not require the players attention Requires player’s attention Player attention is a key element
Relevance3 Does not demonstrate relevance to real world Demonstrates some relevance to the real world Is highly relevant to real world activities
Confidence3 Does not inspire confidence in the player Inspires some confidence in the player Imparts high confidence in the player
Satisfaction3 Is not a satisfying experience Is a satisfying experience Is a highly satisfying experience

1 – “A Game scale to evaluation education computer games”  (Ak, 2012)
2 – SNAKS concepts from “Everyone Plays at the Library” (Nicholson, 2010, pp. 28-30)
3 – John Keller’s ARSC model from “Gamification of Learning and Instruction” (Kapp, 2012, pp. 53-54)

Assessment References

Ak, O. (2012). A game scale to evaluate educational computer games. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 46, 2477-2481. doi: Retrieved from

Ak creates three points of evaluation: Enjoyment (fun), Usability and Learning.  The game must be fun to play or else there is no motivation to start or continue playing it.  Ak skips over usability stating that there are other sources that already cover this metric. The game should provide learning outcomes that are measurable.

Benek-Rivera, J., & Mathews, V. E. (2004). Active learning with Jeopardy: Students ask the questions. Journal of Management Education, 28(1), 104-118.  Retrieved from

This article describes the creation of a Jeopardy for the classroom.  Four objectives were observed.  One, how well did the Jeopardy game help students learn the materials.  This goes back to the attention factory in Keller’s assessment.  Students were found to be more attentive to the learning due to the game nature.  The second objective is how well the Jeopardy game provided teamwork. The social interaction provided by teamwork gives a way for students to brainstorm ideas and facilitate learning.  Objective three was the reinforcement of classroom learning objectives.  The game seemed to provide for this objective.  This third objective can be used to assess the relevancy of the information literacy to retaining the information.  The last objective speaks to Ak’s Enjoyment of the game.  In this study, the students found the Jeopardy game to be  fun which helped in the consumption of knowledge.

Desurvire, H., Caplan, M., & Toth, J. A. (2004). Using heuristics to evaluate the playability of games. Paper presented at the CHI ’04 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Vienna, Austria.

Desurvire and others developed the HEP (Heuristic Evaluation for Playability) and one of the evaluation points is usability (Desurvire, Caplan, & Toth, 2004). The criteria they used for usability includes such physical attributes like game controls that provide immediate feedback and sounds that are meaningful within the game play.  Usability takes on the meaning of game playability so that everything works in the game.

Kapp, K. M. (2012). The gamification of learning and instruction : game-based methods and strategies for training and education. San Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer.

In chapter 3, Knapp describes John Keller’s ARCS model of gaming motivation.  Keller’s four-factor model focuses on designing instruction from which my game intends to extending student library orientation learning through the information literacy built into my game.  The assessment uses the model: Attention – for how well the game keeps the player interested, Relevance – for how well the information presented in the game is important to the player, Confidence – for how well the player feels that they can achieve success in the game and Satisfaction – for how well the players feel that the game has given them informational knowledge for their time spent playing the game.

Nicholson, S. (2010). Everyone plays at the library : Creating great gaming experiences for all ages. Medford, N.J.: Information Today, Inc. .

In chapter 3, Nicholson describes five elements of gaming experience archetypes that are meant for the development of the gaming experience and which are developed in his book.  The five gaming elements are adapted into my assessment and are: Social – interaction between game players, Narrative  – the level of engagement that game has with the player, typically to tell a story,  Action – actions required of the player when playing the game, Knowledge – knowledge that the player brings to the game and Strategy – decisions by the player when interacting with the game.  Together, these five assessments are abbreviated SNAKS.

Revere, L. (2004). Classroom Jeopardy: A winning approach for improving student assessment, performance, and satisfaction. Decision Line, 23(3), 4-6.  Retrieved from

The Revere article details a study using a Jeopardy style gaming experience, with teams, as a replacement for the typical school exam.  Important to my assessment is the observation that social team-based play instills a level of confidence in the students.  The typical test-taking atmosphere of high-anxiety, is replaced by a charged excitement.  “As teams began accumulating points, a feeling of individual and team accomplishment is apparent. The team-based Jeopardy exam also creates an action-based knowledge environment that encourages teamwork.”  These supports active as an assessment factor as well as they teamwork encourages social interaction.  The article concludes that team-based Jeopardy format increased performance and test scores for the Jeopardy class.

Beta Games

1) Library Orientation Scavenger Hunt Game – Sept. 12, 2015

ScavengerHuntThumbThis is a PowerPoint scavenger hunt game where the player clicks on parts of the PowerPoint slides (hunts) to determine if they have answered correctly the question posed to them.  The biggest challenge for me was how big was I going to make this game?  My library’s homepage has a lot of links.  I wanted to make the game realistic but hyperlinking all the links on the homepage would have taken a long time to create.

Rezes_ScavengerHunt.pptx (beta)


2) Information Literacy Jeopardy, Badge Game – Oct. 7, 2015

scratch1This is a badge reward game written in MIT’s Scratch online game coding platform.  This was my first introduction to Scratch and I can say that I liked it.  It is so much different than my previous coding experiences.  The visual elements, dragging and dropping code into place and making sure that they fit together is a fascinating way to design.  I am used to looking at textual code and trying to debug why the code is not doing what I want it to do.  I am not sure how I am going to use Scratch in the future but I think that it definitely has possibilities.  It has also broaden my horizons to look into similar coding platforms like Hopscotch for iPad, GameSalad, Construct 2, Stencyl and GameMaker all of which were brought up at the 2015 Internet Librarian conference.

Information Literacy Jeopardy (beta)


3) Libranary (Library Dictionary), Social Game – Oct. 24, 2015

Libranary is a take-off of the Dictionary game or Fictionary game.  The goal of Libranary is not to try to define obscure words as with its inspirational games.  The goal is to define library literacy concepts that were taught in a library orientation class.  A sample question might be, “What main page link is used to check the due date for your checked out items?”  The fun gets going when a group of student compete with one another.  The competition can be between individuals or between teams.  The social aspect of this game is the peer interaction.

Making a Social Game (beta)