Final Challenge

When looking at the things tweeted at professor Graham’s twitter, many tweeted their favourite ongoing digital history projects. Many tweeted links to projects to put history online and record it like the World War One New Zealanders project or the Building Inspector. Whatever these projects are doing, what makes them good digital history?

Looking at the Building Inspector, the New York Public Library allows others to look at old maps of the streets of New York and fill in the addresses of the section of the buildings on the maps. The whole point is to produce a comprehensive directory of old New York using computers and people to harvest the vast amounts of data from these maps. This is to make it easier to search for these places and ask new questions about these places that make be forgotten and changes in urban planning. Simply put, using the public in order to organize the materials of history  to be online is very much good digital history. Analyzing thousands of these documents are very difficult so employing basically faceless volunteers, the New York Public Library have used the public to create digital history.

These documents may not be seen for years and with numerous people looking over the documents in order to make sure all of the information is correct is a very different and unique way to create good digital history.

Challenge #8 Gamify HIST 2809

Instead of creating a twine this week, I thought a text would be better suited for my idea to gamify HIST 2809.

Historian’s craft is all about trying to do history in a completely different way that have never been tried before mostly looking at the construction of the Rideau Canal. Many documents associated with the construction of the Rideau Canal have not been transcribed or looked at in depth so this being the basis for the course became the basis for my gamification. Using the documents, the students would have to do some required assignments but would instead choose how much they wanted the assignment to be worth and if the students wish to gain back lost grade percentage, can do extra credit assignments. However, because many times the purpose of gamification is to just take away the consumers money as can be seen in the article Gamification is Bullshit, I’ve decided to take the pay to win root and good old fashioned gambling as our sacred learning institutions need more money in order to educate.

Instead of assigning a different percentage to each of the assignments, students will instead gamble 100% of their grades depending upon how much they want to invest on each assignment, discussion group participation, and final exam. For example, if student A felt really confident about assignment #1, they could invest 50% of their final grade on that assignment of which they receive a B+ giving them 38% towards their final grade leaving them with 86% to use on other assignments. There would also be extra credit assignments which still require a percentage of the student’s final grade but would also have multipliers attached to them. For example, if student B has 80% and does an extra credit assignment which he invests 20% in and the assignment has a 1.5x multiplier. The student receives an A on the assignment and would therefore receive 27% towards their final grade and increasing their overall grade to use on later assignments. These extra credit assignments offer a sort of grinding experience for the students in order to acquire the grades they desire.

Now sometimes students will invest a lot of percentage and a lot of time into their assignments and getting a low grade on their heavily weighted assignment can be a very big deal. So instead of textbooks, there would be coursepacks that would basically lay out how each assignment should be done. In order to extract more money by gamificating HIST 2809, you could also make percentage purchasable as well but that’s very unethical in an education environment and probably should be kept on video games like Candy Crush.

The idea behind the multiplier for doing extra credit assignments comes from the NHL games where when you win gain in game currency based on difficulty. This system for grading would actually always give students better chances at getting higher grades because of the multiplier aspect but most likely create a system for ways to cheat the system much like how counting cards works or hacking.