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Gabriela and Chris talk on Gender and Games

Gabriela Richard and Chris Hoadley presented a paper titled, “Investigating a Supportive Online Gaming Community as a Means of Reducing Stereotype Threat Vulnerability Across Gender” at the Games+Learning+Society conference in Madison Wisconsin. The study showed how harassment and negative treatment in gaming culture might lead to pushing women, girls, and other minorities out of games, and how equity-supportive gaming clans may provide a protective effect.

Hoadley's laws of edtech

This spring, Chris Hoadley gave a talk to corporate thought leaders on What’s Next in Learning Technologies. With help from the NYCMediaLab, the slides (and Chris’ Three Laws of Educational Technology) are now online


ELD13 announces Chris Hoadley's Keynote: The Death of Content: Why Universities and Schools are (and aren’t) being replaced by the Internet

The Death of Content: Why Universities and Schools are (and aren’t) being replaced by the Internet

The Emerging Learning Design (ELD) 2013 Conference is pleased to announce the title and abstract of our Keynote Presentation by Dr. Christopher Hoadley, director of dolcelab (see below).

Registration is currently open and can be found at

The conference presentations are still being confirmed but the current schedule can be found at

Christopher Hoadley, Keynotehoadley-sm2
The Death Of Content: Why Universities and Schools are (and aren’t) being replaced by the Internet

In this talk, I argue that the current coin of the realm in academia–content–is dying and that universities need to radically rethink their role in the world. MOOCs, homeschooling, and the shadow education system all are evidence that the 20th century role of schools is decreasingly relevant. But does this mean that schools will become obsolete? I argue that schools face a choice: use technology to enhance their current functions but hasten their demise, or use technology to transform themselves and capitalize on 17th century strengths to be a cornerstone of the 21st century knowledge economy. I offer some ideas on how to reconceptualize the notion of ‘schools’ based on the latest research in learning and on ancient ideas about how to teach.

Gabriela attends and questions at the EA Full Spectrum gaming event


Gabriela Richard, graduating doctoral candidate and adjunct instructor at ECT, recently attended the EA Full Spectrum gaming event, on March 7th, which was hosted at the Ford Foundation, and sponsored by Electronic Arts (EA), the Entertainment Software Association, the Human Rights Campaign, and the Ford Foundation.  The goal of the event was to “bring together leaders from the LGBT and videogame community to talk about the state of hate in videogames, the origins of homophobia in games, the development of authentic LGBT characters and whether our industry is doing enough to combat hate.” (See

gabriela_EAFullSpectrumSpeakers and moderators included:

  • Gordon Bellamy, Tencent
  • Sean Bugg, Metro Weekly
  • Matt Bromberg, General Manager, BioWare Austin
  • Michael Cole-Schwartz, HRC Media Director
  • Deena Fidas, HRC Workplace Program Director
  • Maya Harris, Ford Foundation
  • Dan Hewitt, ESA
  • Ellen Kahn, HRC Family Project Director
  • Lucas Pattan, Out for Undergraduate Technology Conference (OUTC)
  • Hilary Rosen, CNN and Washington Post Contributor
  • Caryl Shaw, KIXEYE
  • Jaap Tuinman, EA Community Manager
  • Luis A. Ubinas, President, Ford Foundation

photoGabriela, who is studying gender, ethnicity, sexuality and context in game culture, as part of her dissertation, asked several questions of the industry and media panels for the event, stemming from part of her research. Specifically, she discussed her emerging research (with Chris Hoadley) on the role that gender-supportive communities can play in increasing the confidence and efficacy of vulnerable players, as well as players in general across gender (they are actually finding that gender-supportive communities also increase the confidence of all players, regardless of gender, but explicitly their rules around female support appear to make a more welcoming place for all).  She also asked about reporting systems and whether they could be designed in a more transparent way, because her research is finding that many vulnerable players don’t report because they don’t know whether they would be safe (though she also recognized that transparency may not be easy for reasons of keeping them effective).

Detailed coverage of the event can be found here

Hoadley featured in report on the digital school

kearny report graphicATKearny recently released an “Issues and Insights” report on The Digital School, featuring an interview with Chris Hoadley.

“No amount of automation can substitute for the personal relationships that often drive learning. If the goal is to make sure that all children have all the important knowledge at their fingertips, we can do that pretty easily. If the goal is to inspire them to actually learn and hold them accountable, then relationships matter a lot more than content. This is an old argument—going back to SMART boards, and VCRs before that, and filmstrips and radios before that. The hardware is merely a platform for the software and the media, which are resources for classroom activities. These activities have to come from somewhere. That’s why the human element must be well aligned with the technological.”


Chris presented at SXSWEDU

sxswedu_2013Christopher Hoadley, program director of ECT/DMDL and lab director of dolce, recently presented on the Evidence-Based Learning Solutions panel at SXSW EDU.

The panel addressed next generation learning experiences with emerging technologies and big data that is informed by the learning sciences.

More information on the panel and session can be found here:

Dr. QIAN Ling visits dolcelab

Dr. Ling Qian, Associate Professor and Director of the Department of Educational Technology at Hebei University came to dolcelab after presenting a talk entitled, “Educational Technology in China.” Welcome Professor Qian!


Hoadley begins appointment at US National Science Foundation

Christopher Hoadley  joins the US National Science Foundation as a program director in the Education and Human Resources Directorate, Division of Research and Learning in Formal and Informal Settings, and in the Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering Directorate, Division of Information and Intelligent Systems on December 2, 2013. Hoadley retains his faculty position at NYU and will be “on loan” to NSF, appointed under the intergovernmental personnel act (IPA) and will help implement the gold standard merit review process and influence new directions for NSF in cyberlearning and informal STEM learning in funding programs such as Cyberlearning and Future Learning Technologies, STEM-C, and Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST). Hoadley has designed and built educational technology programs and researched the connections between technology and learning and learning for more than three decades. He has published extensively and made presentations around the world on rethinking learning, evidence-based learning solutions, and digital education.

Kacie Kinzer and collaborators win a Knight Foundation Challenge Grant

KacieKinzerKacie Kinzer, a first year ECT doctoral student and a dolcelab member, along with her collaborators, won a prestigious Knight Foundation Challenge Grant in the amount of $330,000 to develop an innovative mobile application that allows users to archive and share their oral histories with their family and friends.  They and their design company, TKOH, will develop the application.

“This project, called Thread, will ease the process by building a simple application that enables users of all experience levels to create rich audio/visual stories that can be archived and shared easily with groups of people, ranging from immediate family members to the extended user community, depending on the user’s preference. By making it easy to record and share stories amongst generations and communities, Thread, will make it possible to preserve the stories of target groups, including rural ranchers in New Mexico whose lives reflect a disappearing culture of endurance and gifted storytelling, before the app launches more broadly.”


More information on the award, the project and the team can be found here:

Gabriela Presents at the 21st Annual Women & Society Conference

Gabriela Richard, ECT doctoral student and dolcelab member, presented part of her dissertation research findings as part of the 21st Annual Women & Society Conference at Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY (October 19-20, 2012).

beyond_tropesHer presentation was titled “Beyond Tropes: Exploring the Potential Impact of Gender Inequity in Video Game Culture.”  She discussed how environmental bias, as formed through disproportionate gender harassment and game marketing, creates places that can be inequitable for females and ethnic minorities.  She further used case studies to illustrate the connections between potential media effects and environmental bias and disproportionate agency for females and ethnic minorities in game culture (and in long-term trajectories to STEM).

The full abstract: 

The recent firestorm around Anita Sarkeesian’s kickstarter campaign to fund a video series on common tropes of female characters in video games helped to popularize and shed light on the often limited and stereotypic representations of females in video games, which are quickly becoming a highly consumed entertainment medium.  While many female gamers, developers and media scholars have attempted to address issues of gender inequality in video games and culture, this particular event has appeared to widen the discourse beyond gaming communities and academia.  However, while understanding limited stereotypes in media is an important first step to addressing gender inequality in general in game culture, it is also important to understand the potential impact of gender inequity.  For example, research shows that there is a high level of misogyny, homophobia and gender-related harassment in online gaming.  This kind of harassment, which was also waged against Sarkeesian’s kickstarter campaign, may have some correlation to the lack of gender equality in video games and culture.  The author will present work from her dissertation on gender and video game culture, particularly highlighting the potential impact of gender inequality on players, which can include lack of agency, motivation and self-efficacy.  She will argue that this is not just important for the design of gender-equitable educational games (which her dissertation focuses on), but also for encouraging healthier social environments around video game play.