Teaching Interests and Philosophy

Whether I'm teaching my own courses or collaborating with other instructors I always focus on breaking traditional ideas about disciplines and the university classroom to foster new ways of thinking.  My goal is always support the development of innovative thinkers by through a combination of critical inquiry and hands-on creative practice.

Flowchart outing non-linear course design to be implemented in GradeCraft. Designed in LucidChart.

My current work focuses on the integration of gaming and game development into courses with the Duke Game Lab as a Bass Digital Education Fellow. Including establishing Duke's first Global Game Jam  in 2020. I'm currently collaborating with Professors Shai Ginsburg and Leo Ching to pilot a gameful learning learning management system, GradeCraft. Read more about my project here.

My own courses use broad themes to allow students to work across multiple academic disciplines. For example, "experience" allows me to unite Henry David Thoreau's Walden -- a narrative Transcendentalist experience-- with contemporary ideas of experience including UX and digital gameplay. Read alongside the book's 2017 adaptation, Walden, a game, students connect their experience as gamers to 19th century literary and philosophical trends. These new networks between familiar ideas allows students to imagine new approaches to old challenges and subjects

Likewise, assignments are broad, inviting students to bring their own interest under the lens of the humanities. In a class on the history of space exploration and space race era SF, students organized a small conference. The open prompt, a challenge to teach the class something we hadn't considered, produced research ranging from a comparative, global analysis of attitudes towards A.I. to a de-constructive reading of the music in the TV show Westworld. This model gives students agency in their own educational path as well as an opportunity to practice communicating knowledge in methods common to academic and many professional contexts.

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For a sampling of syllabi and course materials, see Materials.

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