Teachers can use this game as part of a lesson on infectious diseases or to help illustrate how to use the scientific method to perform real-life research. Extensive printable materials are available on the game's website for creating context and additional lesson ideas. The extension activities include additional materials, synopses, mission logs, vocabulary, activities, assessments, and a magazine for teachers.Continue reading Show less
It's hundreds of years in the future, and infectious diseases are spreading. It's up to you and your team to keep them in check. This medical science simulation game allows students to investigate the spread of rabies among animals and humans using the scientific method. Students are drawn in to do the heavy lifting as they construct hypotheses, study tissue, and draw conclusions. The science experiments are simplified, but the concepts are solid.
First, students choose to train with one of the specialists to learn how they work as a team to solve infectious disease outbreaks. They can choose from epidemiology, microbiology, and veterinary medicine. Each path has its own objectives and focuses on different parts of the scientific method. On each path, students use tools particular to that profession, apps to extend the learning, and a glossary to learn important terms. The specialist acts as a mentor to guide students through the experiments and investigation as they study rabies transmission.
While the game itself doesn't take long to play and doesn't delve into much depth, important aspects of the scientific method are covered, and, along with the website's extension activities, a complete lesson is possible. In addition to the scientific method, students learn about infectious diseases and the professions of epidemiology, microbiology, and veterinary medicine. The game also covers case-control study, necropsy, rabies, and science process skills. Students choose the order in which to study the professions, but the game gives specific instructions and eventually restricts players to the correct outcome. Also, to get the full lesson, all three profession paths should be completed. Each of the three professions also has a mini-game to reinforce the concepts learned, but they don't add much to the experience.
Overall, the core of this game offers terrific insights, and the game and the accompanying resources could be helpful resources for extending and enhancing lessons about the scientific method in general and infectious disease in particular.
Key Standards Supported
Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 6–8 texts and topics.
Distinguish among facts, reasoned judgment based on research findings, and speculation in a text.
Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 9–10 texts and topics.
Analyze the author’s purpose in providing an explanation, describing a procedure, or discussing an experiment in a text, defining the question the author seeks to address.
Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 11–12 texts and topics.
Evaluate the hypotheses, data, analysis, and conclusions in a science or technical text, verifying the data when possible and corroborating or challenging conclusions with other sources of information.
Key Standards Supported
Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics
Construct an argument supported by empirical evidence that changes to physical or biological components of an ecosystem affect populations.
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