About the Project

Digital games are socio-cultural practices and products, and gaming has become a mainstream, global cultural force. Applied linguists and FL educators have noted that gameplay is mediated by language use and social interaction, thereby also making it a potentially rich context for language acquisition. Vernacular games, or off-the-shelf, non-educational digital games, are produced by a diversity of countries in a variety of languages. Despite the interest in and availability of these games, ways in which their benefits can be harnessed to enhance FL learning have yet to be fully explored.

In response, the Games To Teach: Developing Digital Game-Mediated Foreign Language Literacies project will provide FL educators the resources (both material and pedagogical) needed to design, implement, and assess digital game-mediated learning activities that have the potential to develop FL multiliteracies. The project is one of the 16 projects being undertaken from 2010 to 2014 at the University of Arizona‘s Center for Educational Resources in Culture, Language and Literacy, a Title VI Language Resource Center funded by the U.S. Department of Education. The project is co-directed by Jonathon Reinhardt, U of Arizona, and Julie Sykes, U of Oregon.

Over the course of the four year grant cycle, the project will produce and offer:

  • reviews of popular digital games in consideration of their suitability for L2 teaching and learning
  • classroom materials for L2 learning activities to be used with widely available vernacular digital games in Chinese, German,  Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish
  • white papers and academic-level working papers on issues related to digital game-mediated L2 teaching and learning
  • a manual for L2 teachers and education professionals on evaluating, designing, and implementing game-enhanced L2 learning activities
  • summer workshops on digital game-mediated L2 pedagogy

For more information, please contact CERCLL at cercll@email.arizona.edu, or the project directors, Jonathon Reinhardt or Julie Sykes