Academic Libraries

In a school or academic setting, games can also be used as anchor points for learning or resources for engaging students with curricular content and skills. There are a lot of great resources that explore the educational value of games, both tabletop and digital. Rosen Publishing has a new series of books coming out in January 2015 entitled Teaching through Games. Game design also extends into learning environments as an excellent way have student apply content and skills, demonstrating understanding and mastery.



What kind of gaming programs work well in academic libraries?

Events that correspond to the start of the semester or as a stress break during finals tend to work well, as these are times that the students are gathering and are ready for a recreational activity.

During the semester, the games need to better align to curricular goals, as students are more focused on coursework.

Many college campuses will also have a gaming club already established. Work with them to find out when their big events are, so you are not competing for the same audience at the same time.




In what ways can games be used for information literacy?

Listed below are some of the ways you can incorporate games into instruction at your library. Included are game elements that are of simple, moderate, or advanced difficulty to incorporate. When possible, examples are also included with the different game elements. This information was originally presented by Rachael Elrod and Cecilia Sirigos at The Citadel, Daniel Library and modified and expanded for the Game Making Interest Group.


  • Using a backstory that makes the "problem" more meaningful to students or patrons to solve or research

    • This could include setting up a scenario that students need to solve by researching in the library databases.

  • Use of first-person point of view

    • Again, similar to the backstory in that patrons are given a scenario to work through.