Thursday, June 6, 2019

URSP Student Julie Demyanovich Explores the Evolution of Teamwork and Student Game Development

 As an undergraduate majoring in Computer Game Design and Psychology, it has been challenging finding ways to take a multi-disciplinary approach that blends the two fields in an academic setting. From my interest in team psychology and leadership, I wanted to investigate the factors that contribute to student game development to better equip students for working in game studios, increase the effectiveness of courses in the Computer Game Design Program, and to gain additional insight on team projects from a leadership perspective. In the future, I would like to pursue organizational leadership roles and contribute positively to the work environment, and this research project has better equipped me with knowledge to tackle some challenges students face while developing games.

For the study, there were three primary methods of collecting data: student surveys at the beginning, middle, and end of a team project; instructor interviews; and weekly surveys completed by a case study group. Every week, I met with my mentor to discuss the progress of the study and talk about approaches moving forward. In these meetings, I would discuss how interviews went, interesting findings that surprised me, and looked at the responses to the general student surveys.

Throughout this term, I have discovered how to navigate the Internal Review Board (IRB), and the techniques required to keep data scrubbed of all personally identifying information. Additionally, I have an increased appreciation for the teaching techniques and approaches professors take in order to inspire students to achieve success.