A new Facebook game designed by University of Southern California researchers aims to help students walk through the complex process of college applications and admissions.
Mission: Admission debuted October 29.
The new Facebook game is part of an initiative from Collegegeology Games project, which uses a game-setting and avatars to teach students the process of college registration.
“We developed Mission: Admission because, for many students — especially first-generation and low-income students — applying to college can be a daunting and overwhelming process,” said Zoe Corwin, assistant research professor at USC Rossier and director of research for Collegeology Games, in a statement. “We wanted to figure out a way to make both the college application and financial aid process more accessible, inspiring and fun.”
Facebook game – as close to reality as possible
The Facebook game allows students to take an avatar through the entire process, keeping it as close to reality as possible. Students in the game meet with advisors, choose the type of school they wish to attend, schedule activities, apply for scholarships, apply for financial aid and request recommendation letters.
“Students in my class tell me that the game has been helpful in getting them to stick to deadlines and better understand the college admissions process,” said teacher Leslie Aaronson, whose 12th-grade class was a part of the pilot project. “They are much more proactive about college now, and in fact, most of my students have already solicited two letters of recommendation and scheduled their SATs in real life.”
College application – an overwhelming process
Scholarships.com states students should be aware of all the options, timelines and requirements which come with the college applications process.
Many students feel overwhelmed by admissions, and some colleges have multiple ways in which to apply.
For most students, application essays are one of the most daunting tasks, and students worry about inadvertently offending college faculty or having a large number of grammatical errors.
Because of how increasingly complex college applications have become, Tracy Fullerton, holder of the Electronic Arts Endowed Chair and director of the Game Innovation Lab, recommends students start looking into the process early.
“With the high ratio of students to college counselors in many schools, game-based learning allows more young people to learn about college earlier than ever before,” she said. “We are encouraging freshmen to play the game because it’s never too early to start thinking about college.”