The Curse of Monkey Island: Holding the Attention of Students Weaned on Computer Games

Looking at the last two semesters taught by the author before the text adventure game and the most recent two semesters, every measure of student satisfaction is better. The only measure that might be troubling is perceived student workload.

This project is very large. Even with high-level architectural design and many useful snippets of code presented in class lectures, students work very hard in this course. The amount of work and new material requires a considerable time commitment from the instructor for office hours and other outside-class contact time. It also requires the selection of a good teaching assistant to provide additional time for questions to be answered. We are examining using a Wiki or similar shared editing space to assist students in asking, answering, and finding previous answers of questions; the efficacy of such a system is pure speculation at this point.

The integration of writing, oral presentation, program design, and coding makes this course a fantastic introduction to software engineering. This helps to overcome students? tendency to compartmentalize, thinking writing is for English class, coding is for computer science, and never the twain shall meet. —Brian C. LaddThe Curse of Monkey Island: Holding the Attention of Students Weaned on Computer Games (Journal of Computing Sciences in Colleges)

Fascinating article on a computer science course that uses a text-adventure project as a way of meeting liberal arts curriculum demands.

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