Learn About Standards the Fun Way: Mars Space Colony from IEEE

Learn About Standards the Fun Way: Mars Space Colony from IEEE


Looking for a fun way to highlight the importance of engineering standards for students while teaching how standards are developed? Need an engaging way to help students develop teamwork, negotiation and consensus building skills? introducing Mars Space Colony: a Game of Standardization from IEEE. This fun and effective role-playing game gives participants a first-hand role in a simulated standards working group. The game has been developed by engineering standards experts with 20-plus years experience in the high-stakes, real world of technical standards development and is fun for everyone no matter their level of technical expertise. Players are each assigned to role to play as part of a standards working group tasked with sending a mission to colonize Mars. The group must come to consensus on four different standards that are crucial to the mission’s success. Players receive role cards that outline how they should play their part without revealing their secret motivations! One person will represent a big corporation with a vested interest in ensuring that their older technology is included in the standard. Another player represents a start-up with a groundbreaking technology that could change everything. Others play such roles as environmentalist, regulator, and more. Together the working group must come to consensus to make the mission a success. Throughout the game, the Game Master will throw curve balls at the group, with late-breaking news that impacts decisions being made. After each working group has reported their decisions, the Game Master will lead a debrief that helps players understand what they have experienced and how it relates to the real world of standards development. After the experience, students have a much stronger appreciation for standards they will need to use throughout their careers and what goes into making them. The leader of the session, called the Game Master, leads this four to six hour workshop. Everything is provided so that the Game Master can set the stage and take charge, including detailed instructions on how to lead the workshop, along with a PowerPoint for the presenter, two videos to play for participants that explain standards development and game play, detailed role descriptions to be printed and handed out, and two case studies that can be used as part of an introduction to standards, or included as part of a debriefing exercise after the game. Game Masters also receive the full support of the IEEE Standards Education staff, with a contact person at IEEE available to answer questions, and provide ideas. Mission to Mars: A Game of Standardization is a fun way to introduce students to the role of standards, and how they are developed, that helps meet ABET criteria and enriches the engineering curriculum. To order for your University Library, please contact your IEEE Account Manager today.

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