May 15, 2009

Second International Workshop on Story-Telling and Educational Games (STEG'09):
Story-Telling and Educational Games – The power of narration and imagination in technology enhanced learning.
21 August 2009, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany


Based on the successful experience form the 1st STEG, a one-day workshop will be organised in conjunction with the International Conference on Web-based Learning (ICWL) 2009 in Aachen (Germany) between 19-21 August 2009.

The work shop will cover a wide range of research issues about story-telling and educational games including story and game design paradigms, Web 2.0 based story-telling and gaming scenarios, advanced story-telling and educational gaming technologies and platforms for technology enhanced learning. It aims at a state-of-the-art discussion on advanced research and open issues on story-telling and educational gaming among multimedia communities, with special focus on how both approaches can be combined.

Workshop topics

  • Story-telling and game theories
  • Story and game design paradigms for Web-based Learning
  • Augmented story-telling and gaming
  • Story-telling and educational gaming with social software
  • Story-telling and educational gaming with mobile technologies
  • Cross-media/transmedia story-telling and gaming
  • Computer gaming for story-telling
  • Multimedia story and game authoring
  • Story-telling and educational gaming applications

Background and Rationale
Already in 2008 the full day workshop on Story-Telling and Educational Gaming (1st STEG) took place successfully bringing together researchers of story-telling and gaming domains from all over the world, triggering fruitful discussions and producing interesting publications. The information on the last year event can be found on the workshop web site under One selected publication on "Gaming between Real and Virtual Life" was accepted to International Journal on TEL. This positive experience can serve as an evidence for the importance of the workshop topic in the modern research world. To reinforce the motivation based on the success of 1st STEG the background and rationale of the workshops area will be described.

Stories and story-telling are cultural achievements of significant relevance even in modern times. Nowadays, story-telling is being enhanced with the convergence of sociology, pedagogy, and technology. In recent times, computer gaming has also been deployed for educational purposes and has proved to be an effective approach to mental stimulation and intelligence development. Many conceptual similarities and some procedural correlation exist between story-telling and educational gaming. Therefore these two areas can be clubbed for research on Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL). Many facets of story-telling and educational gaming emulate real life processes, which can be represented either as complex story graphs or as interleaved sub-problems. This model is congruent with that used for Technology Enhanced Learning in vocational training. TEL in vocational training requires learning models that focus more on the process and less on the content.

The main difference between educational games and story-telling lies in the user's motivational point of view. Story-telling aims at reliving real life tasks and capturing previous experiences in problem-solving for reuse, while educational games reproduce real life tasks in a virtual world in an (ideally) engaging and attractive process. Nevertheless, educational games require highly specialized technical and pedagogical skills and learning processes to cover the topics in sufficient depth and breadth. Imbalance between depth and breadth of study can lead to producing trivial games, which in turn can lead to de-motivating the learner.

While the integration of learning and gaming provides a great opportunity, several motivational challenges (particularly in vocational training) must also be addressed to ensure successful realization. Non-linear digital stories are an ideal starting point for the creation of educational games, since each story addresses a certain problem, so that the story recipient can gain benefit from other users' experiences. This leads to the development of more realistic stories, which then provide the kernel for developing non-trivial educational videogames. These stories can cover the instructional portion of an educational game, while the game would add the motivation and engagement part.

In summary, this workshop aims at bringing together researchers, experts and practitioners from the domains of non-linear digital interactive story-telling and educational gaming to share ideas and knowledge. There is a great amount of separate research in these two fields and the celebration of this workshop will allow the participants to discover and leverage potential synergies.

Yiwei Cao, RWTH Aachen University, Germany
Stefan Göbel, TU Darmstadt, Germany
Anna Hannemann, RWTH Aachen University, Germany
Cord Hockemeyer, University of Graz, Austria
Baltasar Fernández Manjón, Complutense University, Spain
Emmanuel Stefanakis, Harokopio University of Athen, Greece

Program Committee
Amanda Gower (British Telecommunications plc, UK)
Anna Hannemann (RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany)
Bailing Zhang (Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia)
Baltasar Fernández Manjón (Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain)
Carlos Delgado Kloos (Carlos III University, Spain)
Carsten Ullrich (Shanghai Jiaotong University, Shanghai, China)
Christian Guetl (Institute for Information Systems and Computer Media (IICM), Graz University of Technology, Austria)
Cord Hockemeyer (University of Graz, Graz, Austria)
Emmanuel Stefanakis (Harokopio University of Athen, Athen, Greece)
Georg Thallinger (Joanneum Research, Graz, Austria)
Harald Kosch (University of Passau, Germany)
Jose Luis Sierra (Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain)
Manuel Fradinho (Cyntelix, Ireland)
Marc Spaniol (MPI, Saarbruecken, Germany)
Mathias Lux (Klagenfurt University, Austria)
Michael Granitzer (Know Center, Graz, Austria)
Michael Hausenblas (DERI, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland)
Michael D. Kickmeier-Rust (University of Graz, Graz, Austria)
Nalin Sharda (Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia)
Pablo Moreno-Ger (Complutense University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain)
Ralf Klamma (RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany)
Romulus Grigoras (ENSEEIHT, France)
Ronan Champagnat (La Rochelle University, La Rachelle, France)
Stamatia Dasiopoulou (ITI Thessaloniki, Greece)
Stefan Göbel (TU Darmstadt, Darmstadt, Germany)
Stephan Lukosch (TU Delft, Delft, The Netherlands)
Vincent Charvillat (ENSEEIHT, France)
Werner Bailer (Joanneum Research, Graz, Austria)
Wolfgang Gräther (Fraunhofer FIT, St. Augustin, Germany)
Yiwei Cao (RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany)