Dan LaSota

Dan's background is seasoned by physics and astronomy, public government, teaching, software development and adventure. He's putting his M.Ed. in Online Innovative Design to work building remote control science labs at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and lots of other fun courses too!

Latest posts by Dan LaSota (see all)

Three people sitting around a table, meanwhile the sun 93 million miles distance casts its 8.3 minute old rays through the window. There is beer on the table. Out of frame, a yippy puppy.

Owen Guthrie explains the finer points of a game mechanic to Sean McGee as Christen Bouffard contemplates the outcome of a law enforcement scenario the group is exploring with pen, paper, and dice.

CITE fellow Sean McGee has been refining his ideas of running a simulated crisis event with his students as participants. The plan is to have the event run for period of time midway through the Fall 2015 academic semester. Sean is considering the logistics of running and organizing such an event, and how it would fit into his immediate curriculum.

In a recent planning meeting Christen Bouffard and Dan LaSota presented Sean with the possibility of using role play mechanics to test student skills to make a learning exercise more engaging. It turned out that Sean was unfamiliar with role playing games. The team then brought in resident game master Owen Guthrie to run a very short scenario so Sean could get an idea of the potential.

At this point Sean is determining what curriculum might best be developed into a scenario. He’s even considering what other disciplines on campus might benefit from such a simulated exercise. For example, if the scenario involves a simulated earthquake event in Fairbanks, it might be that some natural sciences classes could benefit as well.

This offsite learning opportunity for Sean also illustrates the involvement of the designers at UAF eCampus. Even though Sean is working primarily with Dan and Christen, he was able to draw from the larger talent pool of the eCampus Design Team to get assistance with his project.